Ostendorf Serves Blackhawks Athletes

By Gaylen Blosser – The Early Bird

April 1, 2020

UNION CITY – Chelsey Ostendorf, a Lancaster High School graduate serves as the Mississinawa Valley Athletic Trainer, one of five Darke County school associated with Wayne HealthSports under the direction of James Beyke.

“Chelsey brings a unique skill set to our staff having served as both a high school and collegiate Athletic Trainer in the past,” said Jim Beyke, Director of Wayne HealthSports Rehab Services. “Chelsey also is an EMT and Firefighter with the West Manchester fire department.”

“Mr. Beyke is really nice and cares about our student athletes,” said Ostendorf. “I really enjoy working for him and the staff at Wayne HealthSports.

Prior to coming to Darke County, Ostendorf served with Kettering Health Network.

“Chelsey’s unique skill set has positioned her to approach her job at Mississinawa Valley differently,” Beyke noted. “Chelsey understands how the rescue squads approach their jobs and cover athletic events.”

“She knows how to communicate effectively with the rescue personnel which can be a big advantage in a rural high school setting,” added Beyke. “Our hospital is 11 miles from the school, so having an experienced Athletic Trainer there is a big advantage for the athletes at Mississinawa Valley.”

The 2012 Wright State University graduate is pleased Darke County athletes have an opportunity to remain local when medical attention is needed, reducing travel time and expenses traveling to Dayton for evaluation and treatment.

“I didn’t know any of this was in Darke County until I moved this way,” noted Ostendorf. “The doctors out here that we work with are with Orthopedic Associates of Southwest Ohio, so it’s the same doctors you would see in Dayton and the bigger cities.”

“They have an office here so you are able to get the exact same care that you would get in a big city,” Ostendorf added. “It’s just in your back door.”

Today’s Athletic Trainers play an important role returning injured players back to the court or field in a safe yet timely fashion.

“We do everything from their emergency care to evaluating their injuries, treatments and rehab,” Ostendorf said. “Getting the student athlete from basically the time they have been injured on the floor to when they return to play, getting them to the doctor and helping them through the process of having surgery or just getting them taped up and back on the floor.”

It is obvious Ostendorf enjoys the career path she has chosen and encourages high school students to consider a health care career.

I love my job,” said Ostendorf. “It’s a lot of fun. Everything is different every day and it’s just like going and hanging out. It’s not necessarily like going to work every day.”

“We are glad Chelsey is a part of our team and look forward to watching her grow further in her position,” Beyke concluded.


Fisher Titus MC Athletic Trainer Rospert Adjusts to Life Without Sports

By MARK HAZELWOOD, Reflector Sports Editor, [email protected]

Apr 01, 2020 8:30 PM

Everyone aspires for the “dream” job.

For not quite three years, Norwalk native Jake Rospert has been living that dream. As the head trainer of athletic services at Fisher-Titus Medical Center, the 2008 St. Paul graduate found a way to stay connected with his passion for sports.

“The best part of my job is I get to be an advocate for three entities,” Rospert said. “And that’s for the kids, the schools in the community, and the hospital. I grew up in this community and FTMC is a community-based hospital.

“To be able to be a part of that has been special for me.”

A big part of that job has been put on hold, however. With schools and interscholastic sports in a hiatus since March 12 and through at least May 1 in Ohio because of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, Rospert admits he feels lost.

But the 2012 Bowling Green State University graduate is also quick to point out he feels a sense of purpose.

“Right now, I’m doing whatever FTMC asks me to do,” Rospert said. “That’s part of why I took this job, to be back in the community and helping in a situation like this.

“Really, this is best chance I have to show the reason I came back to the area to work, and I will do whatever they ask me to do,” he added.

Becoming a trainer

Growing up in a large family, Rospert was a multi-sport athlete at St. Paul like most of his six siblings.

The fourth of five sons of Dan and Kathy, Jake has five older siblings, Steve, Anna, Maria, Allen and Aaron. His brother, Kyle, is the youngest, and as Jake likes to joke, he was the only brother to not earn All-Firelands Conference first team honors at St. Paul in football.

By the time Rospert was a senior in high school, it was a toss up deciding between physical therapy and athletic training.

When Rospert was an athlete for the Flyers, Brian Siddall was the FTMC athletic trainer who was a constant around St. Paul and various area high schools.

“He was definitely a mentor and well-liked and respected in this area for his work,” Rospert said of Siddall. “My love of sports and being influenced by someone like Brian, it made it an easy decision to go into a field with sports and athletics.”

After graduation from college, Rospert spent one year working at Clear Fork High School through Ohio Health in Mansfield. After driving an hour each way to work for one school year, Rospert took the same job through Ohio Health at Shelby, shortening his drive time.

Then came the “dream” turn of his career. After three years at Shelby, Rospert was given the opportunity to not only come home, but lead his own department at FTMC.

By the age of 27 in the spring of 2017, Rospert was home and is a fixture on the sidelines and in the gymnasium at all St. Paul sporting event

"It’s been a true blessing," he said. "In elementary and junior high I struggled in the classroom, and was around Coach (Tom) Baker with him tutoring me.”

Now, Rospert not only works with Baker, the junior high athletic director and longtime high school assistant football coach, but he’s had daily interaction with Baker’s son, Adam, a junior at St. Paul.

“To have those types of moments has been fantastic,” Rospert said. “And working with Coach (John) Livengood, who obviously instills a lot of that discipline in you from the first day of your freshman year all the way through graduation.

“And a lot of my family still attends St. Paul,” he added. “I have nephews on football team … it’s all played a huge role in this, and this whole community feels like one big family.”

Livengood said the Rospert family name is synonymous with being trustworthy and hard working people you can count on.

“And that’s exactly who Jake is,” he said. “He has a great personality, but is very thorough and knowledgable as well. He’s not the goofy high school kid he was 15 years ago. He’s very intelligent at what he does, and I have 100 percent confidence in anything he tells me and how he assesses injuries and timelines for kids going through an injury.”

The daily grind

Most don’t fully grasp the time that goes into the athletic trainer position.

Rospert and his staff have hours outside of the school setting they still must perform. There are days the trainers start at 7:30 a.m. and arrive at home 12 hours later — or even later some nights.

There are injury reports to go over and document. There are schedules to set, making sure sporting events are staffed appropriately with the trainers.

Rospert noted there were three trainers staffing the Division II district wrestling championships on March 7-8 at Norwalk High School, a massive event with hundreds of athletes.

In the fall, there is soccer, volleyball and junior high football to also cover along with high school football practices and games.

“We do the best we can for junior high football games with the amount of head injuries and seriousness of those,” Rospert said. “We make sure we’re present for parents and the kids.”

From a football standpoint, Livengood said Rospert is there from the start of summer weight lifting and throughout the preseason two-a-day camps.

“When we’re getting there at 5:15 a.m., he’s already there,” Livengood said. “So he’ll be there until 1 p.m. besides doing his work at the hospital. He puts in a ton of time and is all over the place.”

The longtime coach also said Rospert organizes the CPR and first aid training for the coaching staff.

“The biggest thing that is undervalued is Jake’s ability to act as a liaison between athlete, coach, parent and doctor,” Livengood said. “He’s a consistent line of communication for all of us. We’re all hearing the same message. I think that’s a huge plus, you don’t often get that.

“We’re relying on him as coaches to give us the assessment and breakdown of the timeline of where each kid is at,” he added. “Jake is the final say on all of that.”

But the daily grind of 12-to-14 hour days has its rewards.

“For me to be around the kids more than anything makes it enjoyable,” Rospert said. “I’ve been fortunate to be around a lot of great athletes and great kids who make it easy for me. Being around a kid like Gavin Starcher (2019 St. Paul graduate) for two years made my life and practice a lot of fun. When you get kids like that, it makes it a lot easier to do my job.”

Helping out

But what happens when an athletic trainer can’t do their job? It’s a reality Rospert and his staff has faced since March 12. That is when sports in Ohio — and essentially the entire country — were put on hold in an attempt to flatten the curve of the COVID-19 outbreak.

“It’s definitely a different lifestyle right now,” he said.

Rospert has been a courier for the hospital for the last three weeks. He drives to the various medical buildings and picks up lab specimens to be tested, exchanges mail and billing information — whatever needs delivered or picked up from as far as New London and Milan, to the main campus area of FTMC.

Other trainers have also found new ways to contribute.

Olivia Hipp, who mainly serves as the athletic trainer at South Central, has been transporting patients to various wings of FTMC from the emergency entrance. The hospital currently uses just two entrances.

Norwalk High School athletic trainer Hayley Corso has been at the assisted living Carriage House on the FTMC campus, helping residents as they move around the facility.

“That’s just what it is right now,” Rospert said. “In two weeks, if they ask me to be on the front line taking the temperature of various people, I’m going to do it — or whatever they ask me to do.

“Those of us who work at FTMC, we may not ever get another chance to impact the community like we do in this pandemic,” he added.

As it stands, schools are scheduled to reopen after May 1 — a Friday. If that’s the case, baseball and softball games, along with track and field meets, still have a window to attempt a very short season.

Rospert will be excited to be around the student-athletes again it if happens, but there are some concerns.

“My biggest fear if we do come back is what kind of injuries we see from a general lack of strength conditioning,” he said. “Hopefully nothing crazy happens, but my obvious concerns are kids staying in shape during this time. My belief is most of them are, but there will certainly be a few that slip through the cracks — and that’s probably going to be at all the schools.

“But quite frankly, it’s been very hard not to be around sports,” Rospert added. “I’ve been around it every day of my life for 15-plus years. To not have that right now has been an adjustment period and somewhat difficult.”

In the meantime, Rospert has observed a staff at FTMC that is doing everything possible during the pandemic.

“I see a community in a hospital setting that is really working together,” he said. “I see so many people putting the care of patients before their own health.

“To say I don’t see some fear and anxiety would be a lie, but for the most part, everyone is really pulling together as a hospital and health system. They are putting the patients and community first.”