Keychain, German flag with soccer balls
Keychain, German flag with soccer balls

Looking at this object it looks like nothing special, just a regular old key chain, but not for my family. My grandpa, born and raised in Germany, fled to the United States after World War 2. While he knew absolutely no English when he came to the States, the one thing he and his sponsor family could talk about and agree upon was sports. My grandpa was a huge soccer fan, he played all his life, and as many people know soccer is huge in Europe. Once he became established in the US, met my grandma, built a house, and started a new life he began coaching soccer. He coached for years, and throughout those years he coached all of my aunts and uncles, my mom, all my cousins, my siblings and myself. Soccer was the one thing that brought all of us together. My grandpa was my biggest supporter when it came to me playing and supported me throughout my 14 years in the game. This is the keychain my grandpa had his whistle on and wore all the time when he coached. I was the last person in the family that my grandpa had coached to play soccer, so on my very last game he gave me his keychain. To most people this might not seem like anything special but to me this was an honor. While I don’t use the keychain, I keep it with me as a reminder of my family, the game, and most importantly my grandpa who started it all, who took the ultimate risk to come to the States to start a new life and ended up creating a new tradition that will keep bringing my family together for years to come. 

Place(s): Germany, Pennsylvania

– Sydney Glass

Relationship:  Grandchild of im/migrant Grandchild of im/migrant