BERLIN – A champion wrestler and alumnus will be immortalized at the high school thanks to his former coach.
“When attending the funeral I asked the family if I could do something in memory of Josh,” said Jim Day, Berlin High School wrestling coach and former athletic director.
Joshua Clifford of Berlin died at the age of 43 on Nov. 16.
Clifford was a 1992 graduate of Berlin High School and had a successful wrestling career, including three-time Northwest Conference Champion, three-time Class M State Champion, State Open Champion, and a three-time qualifier for the New England Championship.
He was inducted into the Berlin High School Athletic Hall of Fame in 2014.
His name was on the Wrestling Wall of Honor in the school until it was painted over during recent renovations. The new weight room used to be for wrestling until the team was moved into one of the gyms.
The school hasn’t been able to replace the wall yet.
In memory of Clifford, Day recently started a Facebook fundraiser for the $5,000 needed to display the names of more than 100 champions dating back to 1976.
“It’s moving along,” said Day, on Friday.
Currently, over 100 people have donated a total of $7,060.
“It will add a nice touch, especially in memory of Josh Clifford,” said Jeff Mauri, Berlin High School Athletic Director.
The funds will pay for banners with the champions’ names, including Clifford’s, that will be hung in the gym. The banners will officially be unveiled on Jan. 24, before a home meet with Plainville and also Alumni Night.