Former Ward Melville (N.Y.) Star,
Brendan Cody, a key figure in the Ward Melville (N.Y.) lacrosse community who later played at Nassau Community College and midfield at Johns Hopkins, passed away Sunday from a rare form of cancer. He was 44.
According to friend Bob Betcher, Cody "is considered one of the premier athletes to have come out of the Ward Melville high school athletic program," on Long Island. Cody scored four times in his final collegiate game, the Blue Jays' 1992 NCAA final four tilt with Princeton.
He was a three-sport athlete, captain and all-state football selection in 1987, and captain and New York State offensive MVP on Ward Melville's 1988 state title winning lacrosse team, the program's first appearance at the state tournament in 10 years. "This was a catalyst for the state championship runs that later Melville teams would make," Betcher said of the program that most recently won a state title this spring and finished the season ranked No. 1 nationally. Cody won a national title at Nassau CC in 1990 before moving on to Johns Hopkins. He was inducted to the Ward Melville Hall of Fame in 2003.
Cody in February was diagnosed with a rare form of colorectal cancer in his nasal cavity. He went through 22 hours of nasal and brain surgery at Johns Hopkins hospital in Baltimore, and that was followed by six weeks of aggressive radiation and chemotherapy, which appeared to clear Cody of any signs of the cancer.
But he recently developed what he thought was an upper respiratory infection, and doctors found that the cancer had spread to his lymph nodes, lungs and liver. Cody was moved to hospice in Maryland last week. He lived in Abingdon, Md., and worked as a medical sales specialist.
Cody leaves behind a wife, Lauren, and two young daughters, Kaitlyn and Linsey. Brendan is also survived by his father Richard Cody and Patricia of Vermont, his brother Shawn and his wife Bridget of New York, also his in-laws Christine and Nicholas DeRicco of New York and Lisa McMillan of Maryland.
Betcher is in the process of establishing a fund and trust for the family, and donation checks can addressed to Lauren Cody, and sent to: Bob Betcher, 11 Dover Ct., Wading River, N.Y. 11792.
Visitation services are Wednesday, Nov. 13 from 7-9 p.m. and Thursday, Nov. 14, from 2-4 p.m. and 7-9 p.m. at McComas Funeral Home in Abingdon. Mass of Christian burial is at 10 a.m. Friday, Nov. 15 at St. Margaret Catholic Church in Bel Air, Md.