On Wednesday, several Carlsbad organizations posted announcements stating the extremely terrible news that a young resident in our community has passed away.
Rocky Armendarez was a member of the Carlsbad Shorthorn All Star Team who passed away on Tuesday evening. His baseball team had been playing in the 9-11 Little League All-Star tournament in Albuquerque.
The Roswell Noon Optimists and Shorthorn decided to share the 2021 New Mexico 9-11 Little League State Championship title in Rocky’s memory. The two competitive teams had each beaten the other earlier in the tournament and decided to play their final game for fun in the spirit of sportsmanship.
Armendarez was also an active member of the Boys & Girls Club in Carlsbad. That organization said counselors from the school district are on site providing support.
We join our entire community in offering our thoughts and prayers to Rocky’s family, friends, team members, classmates and fellow club members. Carlsbad is a close knit community, and nowhere is that more true than when it comes to our town’s shared passion for baseball. There are so many Carlsbad residents with fond memories of competing in summer all stars. We all grieve for Rocky and his family, and we know all of our neighboring communities join us in our mourning.
When we talk about Carlsbad’s passion for baseball, one of the names that seems to come up more and more is former Cavemen Sean Allen. Allen, who works for the University of Texas, was honored as the Assistant D1 Baseball coach of the year. Allen, the Longhorns’ pitching coach and recruiting coordinator, coached the Texas pitching staff to the nation’s best ERA at 2.93. His staff had the most strikeouts (556) and lowest batting average against (.215) since 2011. Congratulations to Sean Allen.
Another standout, Justin Gossett, the director of Special Education for Carlsbad Municipal Schools, was recently named Administrator of the Year by the New Mexico Council of Administrators of Special Education. He has served as an administrator since 2007. This is a great recognition.
Finally, congratulations to David Lewis, who was appointed to fill the vacant District IV seat on the Carlsbad Municipal School board. Lewis is a lifelong resident of Carlsbad who graduated from Carlsbad High School in 1973. He spent 16 years as an emergency responder and another 18 years as a training coordinator for the U.S. Department of Energy tribal education program, so he has background with developing and implementing lessons. We look forward in working closely with Lewis and all members of the school board toward serving Carlsbad’s youth.
Carlsbad Mayor Dale Janway