Garcia back where he belongs

Steve Smith
ssmith@coloradocommunitymedia.com
Posted 3/10/21

If you’ve walked the halls of Brighton High School, chances are you’ve seen James Garcia. He’s the campus supervisor, assistant wrestling coach, former BHS student, Brighton resident. These …

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Garcia back where he belongs

Posted

If you’ve walked the halls of Brighton High School, chances are you’ve seen James Garcia.

He’s the campus supervisor, assistant wrestling coach, former BHS student, Brighton resident. These days, he carries a thermometer as part of the process of letting people into home games, thanks to COVID protocols. 

He’s a grandparent, too.

Garcia is glad to be where he is these days .. healthy enough to get out of the house and do something he enjoys.

Perhaps more so than usual.

Garcia suffered a major heart attack a few months ago. He spent four days in ICU.

“Your mind starts to play tricks on you,” he said after Brighton’s regular-season girls’ basketball finale March 3. 

That wasn’t the only thing. There were the usual COVID fears, perhaps a bit worse because his health had been so compromised. Garcia broke his nose when he wrestled at BHS and never repaired it. He said he wondered if he’d see his family, any of his grandkids.

Hospital visits were off-limits because of COVID. 

He realized he had to make a change .. particularly with his diet. It’s not easy to do when you are an admitted fan of sweets. He can’t go to the regular grocery stores … too much sugar for his taste these days. Garcia broke into a broad smile when he told a story of going to a supermarket, realized he couldn’t find anything in the store that wasn’t laced with sugar, then proceeded to throw things back on the shelves before leaving.

Yard work was a problem for Garcia after he got out of the hospital. Not to worry. Members of the wrestling team needed an hour to clean up the front yard of its overgrown grass and weeds.

Garcia was on duty March 3. He chatted with people, took their temperatures, got caught up on the latest news from people he hadn’t seen in a while and from people he hadn’t seen since earlier in the day.

But it was a noticeably smaller-sized Garcia.  He’s lost 30 pounds. He still works out with the wrestling team, though not as frequently as before. But he smiled when he told the story of more than holding his own against two of the top BHS wrestlers in the program.

Garcia always has a smile on his face. It seemed a little wider March 3.

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