Thursday, November 22, 2001

Family, friends mourn boy who always smiled

'The happiest boy I've ever met'

By Janice Morse
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        MASON — Teen-agers in trendy clothes came to remember Scott Asbrock, the smiling A student.

[photo] Police motorcycles lead the procession for Scott Asbrock on Snider Road to the Gate of Heaven Cemetery in Montgomery.
(Glenn Hartong photos)
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        Police in uniforms came to remember Scott Asbrock, the police officer's all-American son.

        And strangers, appropriately attired in black, came to pay respects to Scott Asbrock, the 15-year-old boy whose death they couldn't ignore.

        About 2,000 mourners came for visitation Wednesday and 700 attended the funeral Mass at Scott's church, St. Susanna, three days after he died in a bizarre incident on a downtown Cincinnati street.

        On Sunday, a paraplegic, who police say was driving a vehicle that lacked adaptive controls he needs, plowed through a red light and into a knot of Bengals fans who were walking to Paul Brown Stadium. Scott, a freshman at Mason High School, was killed; five others were hurt. The driver and his passenger were arrested.

        Before crowds arrived at the church Wednesday, Nancy Brown, wife of Bengals president Mike Brown, came to privately extend her condolences — a gesture that touched Scott's family, said his aunt, Beth Asbrock of Sharonville.

        Mrs. Brown said she felt compelled to make that personal contact.

        “His family treated me like I was one of their family,” she said, “and I cried over him as though he were someone in my own family.”

        Scott's parents, Michael and Kimberly, “both just hugged me and said, "Oh, Scott just loved the Bengals!'” Mrs. Brown said.

        The dozens of police and fire personnel who turned out Wednesday functioned as an extended family for the Asbrocks. Scott's father is a sergeant with the Ohio State Highway Patrol's Hamilton post; other relatives also serve on area safety forces.

[photo] Law enforcement officers bow their heads Tuesday at the graveside of Scott Asbrock, whose father, Michael, is a sergeant with the Ohio State Highway Patrol's Hamilton post.
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        Lt. Michael Black, Hamilton post commander, says Sgt. Asbrock and his two sons shared a close bond. Scott was with his brother, Chris, 19, when he was struck. “Mike and his sons, they were always looking forward to spending time together,” Lt. Black said.

        The trio also attended church regularly, said the Rev. Harry J. Meyer. As pastor of St. Susanna for 13 years, Father Meyer watched the Asbrock boys grow up. “They've always had a spring in their step and a smile on their faces,” he said.

        Scott had just been confirmed in October, Father Meyer said, and had renewed his baptismal commitment the day before he died.

        Scott's passions were diverse. He wanted to be an aeronautical engineer, but loved sports, played in the band and served on the debate team.

        “He was a young man who appreciated his own individuality,” Father Meyer said.

        Hillary Benson, his seventh-grade math teacher, said, “He was the happiest boy I've ever met.”

        His classmates agreed.

        “I've never seen him not happy,” said Maggie Smith, 14. “He was just all-around great.”

        Upon a suggestion to always cherish the good times with Scott, she replied: “I don't think there were any bad times.”


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