It’s All in the Family

Father-son duos dominate the wrestling mat


Photo by A. Eaton

These two families encourage themselves and each other to create a environment that thrives.

Will Eaton, Op-Ed Editor

Wrestling is a sport that derives from inspiration based on surrounding situations. Whether that comes from teammates or coaches, it’s pretty standard to get words of encouragement as motivation. But no teammate nor coach knows you best, which is why the best source of inspiration can come from those you are most familiar with: your parents. 

There are multiple father-son duos present on the Viking wrestling team. One of the more prominent and well-known duos is the head coach, Gerard Gauthier, and his son, wrestler Mark Gauthier (10). The two enjoy each other’s company on the team, as they both strive to push each other to their limits.

“At first, it felt weird having my dad there to train me, but after a while, this practice budded into a bond that would last forever,” Gauthier said. 

Overall, Coach Gauthier agrees with this statement, as he truly believes wrestling is something that unites the two together. He enjoys spending time with Mark watching film, strength training, practicing and traveling. They both thoroughly enjoy the sport, which helps Mark perfect his craft and always be one of the best on the mat. 

When asked about the bonds formed between the two teams, Coach Gauthier commented on their goals as a duo. 

“I think it has increased our bond a bit due to the fact it’s something we both have in common and his goals for me are the same as the ones I set for myself,” Coach Gauthier said. 

The two have had some everlasting memories from the wrestling mat. Mark’s favorite memory is from when he went to his first wrestling camp when he was five. He didn’t know how to wrestle at the time, but it started the spark of a bond that would last forever. For Coach Gauthier, one of his favorite memories is something more recent in occurrence.  

“Mark won the Region championship this year, so that was great,” Coach Gauthier said. 

Wrestling also requires strength and agility to perfect, both of which Coach Caldwell, the weightlifting coach at Spartanburg High School, knows all too well. Coach Caldwell trains the wrestling team to use their bodies to their advantage. His son Owen Caldwell (10) also participates in wrestling. 

Coach Caldwell considers wrestling one of his favorite sports, which is why having the opportunity to train his son Owen is so important and special to him. Having this goal allows the two to spend quality time together, and the process of training and watching film together creates positive and competitive spirits between the two. His favorite memory with his son is being able to coach him at the JV tournament at Boiling Springs because of how well Owen wrestled. 

“Having a common interest gives us the opportunity to enjoy something together. We can have a common goal that we can work toward,” Coach Caldwell said.  

Common goals unite both father and son duo, and the excitement of watching each other excel in a sport that they all love carries well beyond the mat.