JAMESTOWN - Just about every football player in Chautauqua, Cattaraugus and Erie counties may be wearing a blue and green No. 25 this weekend in honor of the late Damon W. Janes.
Jamestown's Team Jock Shop has created shirts, hats and more than 3,000 helmet decals to offer its support and raise funds for the Janes family and the newly created Damon Janes Memorial and Scholarship fund at Community Bank.
Janes, a 16-year-old running back on the joint Brocton-Westfield high school football team, died Monday from injuries he suffered during the third quarter of last Friday night's game at Portville.
According to Randy Marsh, co-owner of Team Jock Shop, the 1-inch circle helmet decals feature Janes' No. 25, in blue and green. The blue 2 in royal blue represents Westfield, while the dark green 5 represents Brocton, as it is a combined team.
"We're trying to get them all out to be distributed to every school in two counties," Marsh said. "We've actually had other schools call in from Erie, including Iroquois High School and Springfield, and we want to make sure to get them to them so they can take part."
The idea, Marsh said, is to reach as many area residents who have been touched by the loss of Janes as possible.
"Every football player in the county, and a good portion of the midget programs, should have a No. 25 on the back of their helmet this weekend," Marsh said.
In addition to the decals, Team Jock Shop has also been selling T-shirts for $10, which also feature the blue and green No. 25.
"We thought, 'What else can we do for these guys?'" Marsh said. "How can we raise funds for the scholarship or to help the family, so we did the shirts, and the proceeds will go to the fund."
Although Marsh wasn't personally acquainted with Janes, he and his colleagues felt that because their business couldn't exist without area sports teams, support was the least they could offer.
"From what I hear he was a terrific kid," Marsh said. "When we have a chance to help support something that's sports related, and for a great individual, we had to jump on board. We wish the family the best, and we'll continue doing what we can on our part."
The shirts are available at the Team Jock Shop store, which is located at the Jamestown Cycle Shop, 10 Harrison St. in Jamestown. For more information, call 664-4112, visit www.jamestowncycleshop.com or search for "Team Jock Shop" on Facebook.
The local community gathered in remembrance for Janes during a candlelight vigil, which more than 1,500 attended, Wednesday evening at Brocton Central School. A second vigil will be held today at 7 p.m. Sky lanterns, available for $3 each, will be released during the gathering. The proceeds will be donated to the Janes family.