"Where Are They Now?" Curtis Meendering

Curtis Meendering was on the 2003 cover of the Pigskin Preview. The standout West Lyon lineman was one of Iowa's top college recruits heading into his senior season.

"I played that hard word goes a long ways," said Meendering. "You know Jay is a great coach, and all of the coaches around him do an excellent job at what they do. I credit them for helping me in the weight room. getting stronger and faster and pushing me along in life not just on the football field." says Curtis

Meendering's play helped him receive an offer from Iowa State. unfortunately, some health issues would prevent him from playing college football.

"They did a heart doppler," said Meendering. "Ended up having to a vein wrapped around my windpipe, which is a birth defect and it usually ends up killing children that are like three years old and younger. To live to 16-17 and have that and play basketball all those years and football all those years. just having that and being able to fight through it was incredible. A couple days after our last game, ended up with blood clots again. Was put on blood thinners again. It kind of ruined my college hopes of playing college football, but I ended up in a better place." says Meendering.

These days, you'll find Meendering in a classroom. he's a first grade teacher in Canton.

"I credit my mom for taking me to this route because she used to run a daycare when i was a kid," said Meendering. "Just being around the kids all the time, and helping her out with taking care of them kind of inspired me to work with young children. I just love seeing their faces when they learn something new and get it. it's really exciting."

Meendering is now married to his wife Abby and has a young daughter named Harper who will one day be in his first grade classroom. Along with teaching, Meendering is an assistant coach with the canton football team and he's grateful for everything he learned in his West Lyon playing days.

"I love being around the game still," said Meendering. "it's hard to not just jump in with some of the kids and do some of the drills with them. knowing with the blood thinner and the blood clots, i probably shouldn't. i still end up getting in there every once in awhile and doing some stuff with the kids."