A familiar phrase to any Bishop Foley Catholic student is “The Foley Family” and it means different things to different people. This phrase indicates how tight-knit the school is across the student body. These bonds that are created through the Foley Family are carried over through lifelong connections. On The Foley Freeze, this slogan rings especially true. Currently the team has seven pairs of siblings, three students who had an older sibling on the team, and 13 parents that mentor the team and also have a child or children on the team. Some parents work on the same subteam as their children while others do not. The Boyles and the Hagens are a common sight in the build room, both working together and working apart. John Boyle works as a consulting engineer and joined the team as a Prototype mentor last season when his daughter Becca ’19 joined the team. He recalls that last season, Becca would come and ask him how to do a certain task. “I would ask her, ‘how do you think you do that?’ and when she told me her idea, I would encourage her to try it as long as she wasn’t going to hurt herself,” he said. He confided that often times, he didn’t know how to do it himself and was interested to see how she planned to accomplish the task. Greg Hagen is the Chief Manufacturer of Chevrolet Performance Cars and he works as a mentor for the build subteams with his son, Tyler ‘18. When asked how he liked working with his dad, Tyler said “he travels a lot for work, so it’s really nice to be able to spend time bonding with him doing something that excites both of us.” Some families however, are never seen together, such as the Causley family. Steven ‘18 is the controls lead and has worked on the programming subteam, Sabrina ‘21 works on the public relations subteam and their father Pat works with the build subteams. “It’s really cool that The Foley Freeze is a team that can be joined at all grade levels, and it is fun to have a common activity with my family,” said Steven. The number of biological families that are a part of the team provide a deep sense of family with each other. The team has had many different families join the program and leave a lasting impression and legacy. These families have students that are recognized by many different teams throughout the country, creating friendships throughout all of FIRST. Two of these Foley families are the Doxens and the Reichenbachs. Both families have multiple students that have joined the team and become captains, leading the team to many successes over the years. Between the eight collective students, six of them have been team captains and held several other leadership roles on the team.
When asked how he liked working with his dad, Tyler said “he travels a lot for work, so it’s really nice to be able to spend time bonding with him doing something that excites both of us.”
The Doxen Family has been a part of The Foley Freeze since Dominic (class of 2013) joined the team his freshman year. He was followed by his brother Jacob (class of 2017) and two of his cousins, Ian Wardowski (class of 2018) and Zachary Moore (class of 2019). Through his four years as a student, Dominic was a subteam lead, captain, and has now become a crucial member of the mentoring staff upon his return last season. In June of 2017, Dominic earned his bachelor of Science degree at Kettering University, during which time he mentored another FRC, the Steel Armadillos (FRC 818). Jacob followed in his brother’s footsteps and became a captain during his junior and senior year, as well as being on the drive team both years. He is currently attending the University of Michigan pursuing a degree in nursing. Jacob helped lead the team to the World Championship during his junior and senior year and left a lasting impression on all of his teammates that traveled with him on the bus to Saint Louis. Ian now carries his cousin’s legacy as a captain and guide to the team. He has been a leader in the build room over the last two years and many of the underclassmen look up to him. He plans to attend Ferris State University in the fall to pursue a degree in Architecture. The entire team is looking forward to the competition season with him as a leader. Zach divides his time during robotics and wrestling in the winter. He is a member of the Fabrication subteam and works closely with Ian.
The Reichenbach family is also a pillar of The Foley Freeze. Starting out with Ryan (class of 2014), all four of the Reichenbach brothers have been a part of the team including, Grant (class of 2016), John (class of 2018) and Curtis (class of 2021). Parents Jim and Gretchen Reichenbach both mentor the team and plan to continue for several years to come. Jim works at General Motors and brings his engineering skills into the build room as a lead mentor, while Gretchen uses her creative skills to assist the Public Relations subteam and manage the team’s gear. Both of them are always willing to lend a helping hand and assist where ever they are needed. Ryan was a captain on the Foley Freeze. He is currently finishing his bachelor’s degree at Kettering University. Ryan still participates in FIRST by mentoring the Steel Armadillos (FRC 818). Grant, a former captain, driver and lead strategist, lead the team to the World Championships in 2016 with Jacob Doxen. He is currently attending Wayne State University pursuing a degree in biomedical engineering. He continues to participate in FIRST by mentoring the Hammerheads (FRC 226) of Troy Schools. John is one of the current team captains, works diligently to guide students on the electrical subteam as subteam leadand put his experience to good use. He is planning to attend college to pursue a degree in engineering. Curtis joined the team this year as a freshmen on the Fabrication subteam and is quickly picking up important skills. He is excited for the next four seasons on the team.
All of these families, among others, have made a large impact on The Foley Freeze that will be carried on for many years. The dedication of these families have allowed The Foley Freeze to succeed and grow.