An Ohio teen who was left orphaned after a murder-suicide eight years ago has earned herself a full college scholarship to attend The Ohio State University through hard work in the classroom -- and as a caddy on the golf course.
Caroline Jarrell was 10 years old and watching the Disney Channel when she heard four gunshots ring out into the night outside her father’s home.
It was 8:04 p.m. on Jan. 10, 2012 -- a time she said has always stuck in her mind.
Her parents were divorced. And her mother had arrived to pick up the children from a stay with their father, she told FeedLine.net.
Caroline was the first of her siblings to venture out after the noise. She found their mother’s body in the driveway, in her car with the family dog. Her father was dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound nearby.
“I didn’t know what was going on,” she said Thursday. “I just knew that something bad had happened.”
She remembers seeing blood, trying to talk to her mom, and a neighbor calling 911. Much of the rest of the night condensed into a blur.
“It was just chaotic for everyone,” she said.
Her grandparents, Dennis and Linda Pawlecki, as well as her mother’s brother Michael Pawlecki, drove over an hour that night to be with the children.
“They were really helpful that night,” Jarrell said. “They helped calm me down, even though they were going through everything.”
The Jarrell children stayed in their mother’s house the rest of that school year, with frequent visits from the Pawleckis. Then they moved in with their grandparents in Toledo, Ohio.
Next semester, Jarrell is headed to The Ohio State University on a full ride thanks to the Evans Scholars Foundation, named for Charles “Chick” Evans Jr., a famed amateur golfer who set up the program with the Western Golf Association in 1930.
Nick, the oldest of the Jarrell children, had already been caddying before they came to Ohio, at his mother’s urging. It was in an effort to earn that same scholarship.
In Toledo, one of the first things he did was find a new caddying job at the famed Inverness Club, Caroline said. He eventually received the Evans Scholarship and went to The Ohio State University. Now he’s an English teacher in Cincinnati.
Ellyn Jarrell, the middle child, earned herself her own Evans Scholarship -- and she’s still attending the University of Notre Dame, where their mother went to college.
Following in the footsteps of her older siblings, Caroline started caddying at Inverness in the summer after eighth grade. She said it’s the only job she’s ever had.
Now, she’s also achieved the Evans Scholarship.
Working at Inverness, she met her future Ohio State roommate, Kelcy -- who is yet another Evans recipient.
The Evans Scholarship covers full tuition and housing costs for “high-achieving caddies with limited financial means,” according to the foundation. That amounts to an estimated $120,000 per recipient. The Evans Scholars Program says it has paid out $410 million in scholarships overall.
The scholarships receive financial support from tens of thousands of Par Club donors, as well as the WGA’s BMW Championship, which is a PGA Tour FedEx Cup playoff event.
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Recipients show good grades, financial need, “outstanding character” and a strong caddie record.
At Ohio State, Caroline said she will study social work -- a career path she chose because of the social worker who helped her keep it together when she dealt her parents’ divorce as a child.
“She was the first person who, besides my mom and my siblings, who just made me feel heard,” Jarrell said Thursday. “I just wanted to be that person for someone else, to help them feel like they’re not alone.”
He said: "O Adam! Tell them their natures." When he had told them, Allah said: "Did I not tell you that I know the secrets of heaven and earth, and I know what ye reveal and what ye conceal?" And behold, We said to the angels: "Bow down to Adam" and they bowed down. Not so Iblis: he refused and was haughty: he was of those who reject Faith. (The Cow 33-34 )