Brian Meeney, coach of St. Thomas Aquinas high school died suddenly at the age of 46, the school announced.
“We are saddened to share that head football coach Brian Meeney has passed away. At this difficult time, please keep the Meeney family and the STA family in your prayers. Counselors and Campus Ministry will be available to assist any student in need during this difficult time.”
Moreover, Brian Meeney led the St.Thomas Aquinas High School to an undefeated record season in the past fall in 2021.
Jerry Smith, the athletic director at St.Thomas Aquinas was the first person who received the phone call. The phone call was made by Meeney’s brother at 11:30 a.m. on Thursday. He informed Smith about the sudden death of Meeney, He suffered from a massive heart attack on his way to school.
Meeney considered Smith as a father figure, the two had a father-son relationship.
“We’ve had a great relationship for a long time.”
“I’m like the father figure he never had in his life. We had our arguments, but we always had our love,” Smith
Meeney and Smith met back in the 1990s when Smith was an assistant coach and he was a football player, Iselin Kennedy.
Head coach at the Edison school, Meeney attended J.F Kennedy High School in Iselin. Later after three years, he was transferred to Perth Amboy Tech preferably in 1992-93.
Just after an hour of the cruelest phone call, however, Smith gathered his senses back and headed towards the school auditorium to make the saddest speech for the football squad.
“My voice was cracking, I was in tears. You could not believe how these kids responded, with screams and tears and just disbelief. It was devastating. Their grief was just so overwhelming,” Smith said. “So bad we wound up canceling all sports after school today.”