Tysean White, the recipient of the 2018 Willie Jones Award, continues to be an inspiration to everyone who knows what he has had to endure at such a young age. White has displayed an unbelievable amount of courage, strength and resiliency since the life-changing events that took place near the end of his freshman year at St. Augustine High School.White lost his mother, Quiana Washington. She succumbed to Lupus after battling the disease for many years. White received the heartbreaking news in the hospital with his Aunt Sherrell Tyler, Saints head football coach Richard Sanchez and a psychologist by his side. White stood resolved. He was set to live with his mother’s boyfriend – a father figure to him – during the week and his aunt on the weekend. But when he went back to the apartment they had lived in, the boyfriend moved out, changed his cell number and has had zero contact with White since. White was not even able to collect his belongings. Still, White persevered.
The linebacker wasn’t always the best student, but through hard work he made the honor roll in 2017. He was thriving academically and athletically by the end of his junior year and throughout his senior year. A three-year varsity starter and team captain in 2017, White helped the Saints win the Western League title with six tackles for loss and three sacks. He was selected to the All-Western League Second-Team Defense.
White was offered 13 athletic scholarships, but has decided to attend the United States Naval Academy knowing his mom would be proud of him committing to serve his country. He is interested in studying economics. In his free time, White enjoys working out and playing Fortnite. Tysean is the son of Quiana Washington and Tyrone White.