Three years almost to the day since Tyler Phipps ‘08 passed away, his memory is alive at York College. Phipps’ father Steve Phipps presented a $5,000 scholarship to YC wrestler Pierce Mederios in memory of his son on Thursday in chapel.

​“We wanted to select somebody with some of the same attributes Tyler had,” Phipps told Mederios during the presentation. “Integrity, commitment, faithfulness, and humility...I’ve heard a lot about you and what I’ve heard is that a lot of those attributes are what you carry through life, too. I’m thrilled to be able to honor you with this scholarship.”

PictureTyler Phipps
Steve Phipps spoke in chapel about Tyler accomplishments during his 30 years on this earth, recounting stories that illustrate the character of compassion and integrity his son demonstrated. Tyler was a friend to outcasts and a spiritual mentor to classmates and teammates. He made right choices even when it was hard and unpopular to do so. Steve Phipps recalled the outpouring of love the family saw after Tyler’s passing in 2015, as many shared about the impact he’d had on their lives, including three people who came to Christ at his funeral.

Tyler Phipps wrestled for York College from 2006-2008 and his athletic discipline and determination defined much of his character. His father describes Tyler as being a strong christian when he came to school, but that he experienced tremendous growth while at York College. “I knew nothing about the town or school of York until my son made the decision to come here, but the school has left a lasting impression on my family and people in Southwest Missouri,” Phipps said.

The Phipps family has started a foundation in Tyler’s memory that has so far raised $100,000 to provide scholarships. Mederios, a sophomore biology major from Mountain Home, Idaho, is the second YC student to receive a Phipps scholarship. Teammate Austin Coy received one in 2017. The family plans to present one scholarship each year to York College wrestlers in addition to their broader scholarship program.

PictureMen's Wrestling Coach Greg Smith
Steve Phipps owns Market Fresh Produce in Nixa, Missouri. Tyler, who earned a degree in business administration at York College, worked in the family business for eight years prior to his passing.

“I want to thank Steve and Vickie for allowing their son to be a part of the York College family and entrusting us with him during his time here,” Men’s Wrestling Coach Greg Smith said in a statement after the award was presented. “Our wrestling program was blessed to have Tyler representing us. He impacted the York College campus in so many ways because of his love for God and his love for people. Tyler epitomizes what we look for in our wrestlers; he was courageous, disciplined, hard-working, humble and selfless. I am so grateful that his legacy is still blessing my life, our wrestling program, and the lives of others even after his time on earth is finished.