Duxbury football returns to field after anti-Semitic scandal

DUXBURY, Mass. — Weeks after an investigation found the Duxbury High School football team had used anti-Semitic language in its play-calling, the varsity team returned to the field Thursday. The school district canceled its games following the independent investigation launched last month, and an opposing team’s positive COVID-19 case delayed their return to the field.

Before Duxbury’s away game against Scituate Thursday, captains of both teams came together, sharing a joint message with spectators.

“As student-athletes and members of the larger Scituate and Duxbury High School communities, we stand by our commitment to be inclusive in our words, actions and spirit,” the announcer read. “We denounce all acts of hate, bias and discrimination. We continue to grow and learn as individuals and acknowledge that together, we are stronger. Today, we share our love for football, our teammates and our communities.”

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The investigation found the team had been using words including “Auschwitz,” “rabbi” and “dreidel” in play-calling. The language was discovered during a March 12 game but is said to have been used for years.

Dave Maimaron, who had coached the team since 2005, apologized for “insensitive, crass and inappropriate language,” and was fired.

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When Duxbury finally took the field Thursday, the team played its last game of the season and pulled off a hard-fought win. For seniors, it was the last game of their high school careers.

“It’s great to see that they won. They came together as a team, and we’re very excited about the outcome,” said one Duxbury parent who declined to provide his name but stressed that the scandal does not define their kids or the town. “This defines the community coming together. And we’ve done all the steps to correct this action. And I don’t think the town should be vilified for the actions of a few.”

The school set up mandatory diversity workshops for the team.

In a letter to football families, the principal said of the trainings, “This program will focus on the Holocaust, not just as a historical event but as a lived experience that continues to impact families every day. The second workshop will focus on the role and the responsibilities of being an upstander.”