Dennis Stemler

Dennis Stemler, was diagnosed with Idiopathic (unknown cause) Epilepsy since age two.  He was on many medicines throughout his life and he struggled often with the side effects of the medicines, the after effects of the seizures and the teasing of kids (they did not understand) when having a seizure.  He was tested for brain surgery, but unfortunately was not a candidate.  Through all of this, Dennis did NOT let his seizures, medicines or others misunderstandings stop him from giving 110% in all he wanted to do in life!  He enjoyed playing many sports, including basketball, volleyball and running and he loved to make others laugh and smile.  He came to Elder in August of 2002 where he earned academic honors, ran cross country, played intramural basketball, joined glee club and was a member of the corn hole club.  Dennis loved the great camaraderie, education, spirit and pride of Elder.  In February, 2004, Dennis was trying out for Elder’s JV volleyball team and never found out if he would have made it because on February 24th  that same year, while typing up a religion assignment at home, he had his last seizure.  He passed away from what is called SUDEP (sudden unexplained death from Epilepsy).  The odds for this to happen to someone with Epilepsy are ONLY .1%.  For some reason, God chose Dennis to go to Heaven early where he is certainly helping out with God’s plans and still giving 110%.  Dennis’ parents, Dennis and Debbie, created a scholarship in Dennis’ Memory and recipients are chosen based on their perseverance (working through difficult obstacles), determination (never giving up and always giving 100%) and Christian values (living everyday as a gift from God).