Ricky McAllaster was indeed a very unique boy. Ricky started playing sports at the age of 3 and by age 5 his family realized that he was going to be quite an athlete. He was the backup goalie on an 8 and under roller hockey team that won the East Coast Roller Hockey championship. When he turned 7 the family moved to Breckenridge Colorado where he took his hockey skills to the ice. He was the goalie on the Summit Lightning Squirt team that came in second in the State of Colorado. During this time he decided to also take up downhill mountain biking, where he qualified for the Nationals as a 9 year old. It was incredible watching him come from the top of Keystone mountain to the bottom in 6 minutes. He also decided that he wanted to take up snowboarding and joined Team Summit in his last year in Colorado. He specialized in the boardercross and ended up the season as the 3rd ranked boarder in his age bracket in the State of Colorado. No matter the weather Ricky wanted to be out there every weekend. He loved the sport. During his final year in Colorado Ricky decided he wanted to take up lacrosse, which was new to the area. He played as a 5th grader on a 6-7th grade team and quickly learned the sport. He was fortunate to have great coaches that taught him the fundamentals as well as how to maintain his equipment, especially the strings on the stick. He was a pro at stringing a stick and all of the other kids wanted him to do theirs.
In 2006 the family moved back to Savannah and Ricky wanted to continue his passion for lacrosse. When he showed up for the first middle school practice he was disappointed to learn that only 4 boys were there. Having suffered through a 1-16 season that year with only 14 players Ricky made it his mission to recruit players for the team and he became a master recruiter. His father, Richard McAllaster, took over the coaching the following year and mainly through Ricky's efforts, 30 kids showed up for practice. The team only lost one game that year and the foundation for sustainable lacrosse in Savannah was in place. The following year the middle school team played 31 games, winning 28 of them and Ricky was again very active in recruiting kids to the program. Ricky was a three time middle school All Star player and was very instrumental in the formation of a varsity team at Benedictine Military School. He worked with his dad to make sure that a number of the lacrosse players came to the school and he actively recruited players during the first semester of the school year.
Ricky was thrilled when he heard that he was accepted as a member of Team Palmetto as a freshman in 2009. He always seemed to end up playing with older players so Team Palmetto did not intimidate him. He worked very hard to improve his skills and he accepted his role on the team with great maturity. He took advantage of his playing time, scoring in each of the tournaments.
Ricky died in a single car accident on New Year's Eve 2009 and never got the opportunity to play lacrosse for Benedictine Military. He left his mark as a great athlete, but more than that, he was a great friend to everyone he met along the way. His visitation attracted over 1200 people in all walks of life.....teammates, friends, admirers, family, and everyone who loved this amazing young man. His zest for life was infectious and he crammed everything he could into his 15 years. We all know that we were given a gift when Ricky came into our lives.