Moe was never afraid of the icky things.
Every Thanksgiving, she would help her father get the turkey prepared. Get out the bag of turkey parts and the neck. Put her little hands under the turkey skin and meat and separate the two and apply the turkey with a rub. Moe would fill the bird with stuffing and then she would help make breakfast afterward. Moe did not eat turkey well into her teens, either. Moe would be the one to pick up frogs when her sister saw them or the horseshoe crabs at the aquarium so everyone can see the bottom with their legs moving around.
What everyone knows about Moe is soccer. Just like most girls growing up in North Huntingdon, PA, they played soccer. Her big sister played soccer; her older cousins played soccer. It was something she loved from the beginning. Even though there was a year of cheerleading mixed in, it was easy to realize she loved soccer after one game of cheer. Some of Moe’s favorite soccer stories to share were from her younger days.
We had a bet when the girls were young that whoever scored the most goals in their game got to choose where we would go for dinner. Keli finished her game and was rubbing it in because she had three goals in her game. Moe only had one goal at the half and her sister kept reminding her she had more. Moe went on to score three goals in the second half of her game. Upon getting her fourth goal, our family friend, Lori Best, knew of the bet and asked Moe where she was going for dinner, and a six-year-old Moe responded proudly, “We are going to Hooters!” Yes, North Huntingdon, meet the Rosensteels. If you were wondering what if Keli had won where we were going, it was the Golden Corral. High-end stuff here.
There was the indoor tournament at East Allegheny where, on the opening kick from the opposing team taken by a young man named Brando (who would take her to several high school dances and prom), the ball caught Moe right in the face. She stumbled and just played on. At the conclusion of the game, Moe showed us that her two front teeth were dangling. Not allowing her mother and father to touch them, she went into the restroom and pulled them out. She was seven years old.
Moe chose the number 86 because she liked Hines Ward.
Hines Ward played hard, made big plays and hit people. What Moe liked best about Hines Ward was that he smiled, too. It was an effect he had on her throughout soccer. During games and in difficult challenging moments when players where dialed in, serious or nervous, you could find Moe smiling about something. Moe loved to show off her bruises; and those bruises were badges of hard work.
In 2015, Moe’s freshman year at Greensburg Central Catholic, she won the WPIAL Class A title with her sister on the field and her father on the touchline as an assistant coach. Their teammate Sarah scored the game-winner in overtime, and we have vivid memories of the jubilation on their faces. It was a proud day for the family. Not only did they win a title, but it was together as a family with some of Moe’s closest friends.
During her senior season while at Ringgold, in the last game of her high school career, the game started to get chippy. Then the chippiness turned into a brawl. One of Moe’s teammates had several girls on her, and Moe, along with the opposing coach, Adam, who was one of her club coaches from the past couple of years, ran in and started pulling girls off her teammate. Moe always had your back. The funny thing, in the end, the referees were unsure who was all involved and gave a red card to her close friend Johnna instead of Moe because they looked alike.
Moe’s most-favorite goal may be when she scored a goal for the Shredders 3v3 team when Coach Bill said he would buy the girls ice cream if someone scored a goal with their head. The girls got ice cream that day. Goal scoring was not her favorite thing to do; that was setting up the goals. Playing the ball into the box from a corner kick, or a perfectly weighted through ball that led to the goal, put as big as smile on her face as anything else.
Moe worked hard and put a lot of time and effort in, as many girls do, to try and find the right school for her at the collegiate level. She found that school in West Virginia Wesleyan College. They had a great soccer program with history. It was a small school, which she was looking for, and somewhere not too far from home. It was a great fit. Not only did the school provide academically and athletically what Moe was hoping for, it gave her things outside of school she wanted to do in her down time. There was a kayak boat ramp right behind the soccer field. The front courts at school were where students would hang hammocks to study and hang out. That was something we were looking at to buy Moe as she got ready for college.
Soccer could be an outlet when things were not always going well, or being new to a school.
It gave her some familiarity and a place to be where she knew it was a soccer ball and a group of players just playing the game she loved.
Moe loved to watch the TV shows where people would flip and decorate homes or treehouses. Treehouse Masters and Fixer Upper were, by far, two of her favorite shows. Watching Moe’s mind go to work while trying to match wits with Joanna Gaines.
When we moved back to the Mon Valley, we redid a house, which meant demo day. Everyone loved demo day in the kitchen. Where Moe shined was helping to visualize the paint schemes and colors for the new house. Her father and Moe would send picture and color ideas back and forth until they both got home from work and school. It was the fun of doing the rebuild with Moe and the family. Moe got to leave her mark on the house, all the way down to the area rug in the living room. That was a long discussion between Moe and her mother as to why this rug matched the accent wall and pillows on the couch, and it was the correct area rug for the room. She got to do what Joanna did on TV. Then we took time in the summer of 2019 to lay out Moe’s design for the bathroom; but we never got to do that project together.
The house had a numerous amounts of pine trees with two just right for a hammock. Moe wanted to buy a hammock. Moe’s father told her we would need to get them cut down, but that we will leave two high enough for a hammock. Well, the trees are now down and the two are standing decorated with lights where a hammock for Moe now hangs. It is a place of peace and somewhere to think quietly. When the leaves are fallen, you can see the lights through the valley from Moe’s resting place. She knows we are not far away.
There are so many memories of Moe day-to-day. The pictures, the house, school and the stories we share and her friends share. The game of soccer is a reminder when we see the young ladies playing the game they love as Moe loved. It’s as if we are seeing Moe out on the field, competing, pulling off some move, trying to nutmeg someone and walking around with a big smile.