Slaughterhouse-19 Matron and Patron Saints

The Matron/Patron Saint Award was created as the first season of Indy Eleven was coming to an end in 2014. Slaughterhouse-19 leadership wanted an award that anyone could win, since it has always been Slaughterhouse's belief that this team is more than just the players on the field, but the community surrounding it as a whole. While the awards at the end of the season should be primary for the players, it was determined that one of the group's end-of-year awards would be to highlight the contributions of someone who personifies the spirit of our community, regardless of whether that person is a player, supporter, front office staff member, or someone in the Indianapolis soccer community as a whole. Over the years, members of all four categories have garnered votes for this award. The artwork for the awards is hung in the group's home bar, the Union Jack Pub, and all of the artwork is drawn by Patrick Cummings as a labor of love.

As an unofficial historian of Indy Eleven, I thought it would be good to have a place where people could see a running list of the Indy Eleven supporters who have won the award of Slaughterhouse-19 Matron or Patron Saint. With the help of Peter Evans, the former BYB president and Slaughterhouse-19 cofounder, we have put together a list of the winners, along with Patrick's artwork, and a blurb about each year's awardee. Peter covered the bulk of the blurbs, but refused to do one about himself, so I wrote his. 

2014 - Peter Wilt

It was pretty obvious that Peter was going to become the first Patron Saint. For those who were present in the early days of the club, and even before the team was announced, it was always Peter who was championing the cause. He was, and still is, a deeply thoughtful person who made sure that everyone's opinion mattered in shaping the club, and did all he could to help start this community on the right foot.

2015 - John Chope

John was somehow the "old guard" of the Slaughterhouse-19 and BYB section before we were even old enough to have one. John's knowledge of supporter culture, both domestically and abroad, helped make game days run smoothly and helped set the tone for the section in the early years. He was the old metalhead of the section who didn't take shit from anyone and was always willing to go the extra mile.

2016 - Peter Evans

In many ways, Peter Evans was ubiquitous as being the face of the Indy Eleven supporter section for the early days of the club. Peter was a co-founder of Slaughterhouse-19, but for the Brickyard Battalion, he has also been the operations director, the vice president, the president, a capo, the tifo director, and its Independent Supporters Council Representative. As a reward for his long-standing dedication to the team and his constant presence in the capo stand, Peter was the club's inaugural recipient of the XI Century Award, presented to Indy Eleven fans who have attended 100 games. Peter was once quoted as saying, "You don’t do that role if you just want to put it on a resume. You’re doing it because you love your club, your city, and your team.” That statement fits with everything I know about Peter and why he has done all the things he has done to support Indy Eleven.

2017 - Chelsey & Jay Wetzel

Early in the process of everything beginning, the Wetzel's were eager to open up Union Jack Pub's doors to supporters. Honestly, without them, a lot of momentum would have been lost between home matches. They have always let us do whatever the hell we want in their bar. They've had that same policy with the many other supporters groups for foreign clubs that meet there as well. They've given so many in the Indianapolis soccer community a home away from home, and the stories of dumb shit they've let us do in the bar will live on in IXI supporter lore forever.

2018 - Nancy Brown

Take one part passion, one part drumline knowledge, one part logistical expertise, and one part Grumpy Cat, and you have Nancy Brown. Without Nancy, The Warheads (BYB's drumline) would not be what it is today. Her leadership and willingness to show up even on days when things weren't great, are what has made Nancy such a respected part of the section. If the BYB is the lifeforce on gamedays, then Nancy is the beating heart of it all.

2019 - David & Cedar Rosenfield

A tie with three winners. I still remember the announcement and the sounds of shock throughout Union Jack. Cedar & David Rosenfield are our beloved Wisconsinites who have contributed so much of their energy to the section. Without David, our horn line and the songs we love (Tetris, Indy Till We Die, Narcos, Bella Ciao) do not become part of the gameday rotation. I'm constantly impressed by David for the sheer amount of games he played through while dealing with reoccurring, chronic migraines. David's husband, Cedar, is just as vital as he's been critical in keeping things going during matches, addressing needs the drumline and horn line have mid-match, and overall always keeping spirits up, even on gloomy days.

2019 - Amanda Wallace

Amanda was a bit of an unexpected winner at the time. It was the first year she was very active in the section, serving originally as the Assistant Operations Director before moving up to Operations Director that season. Her passion is unsurpassed and the effort she puts in on matchdays to make sure the section functions is worthy of the title of Saint. In the time since she has won, she's become the capo everyone knows, the away day maven, and a vital part of the section.

2020 - Katherine Reed

It's hard to think of things not to say about Katherine. She took over as President of the BYB in a turbulent year, and has weathered a lot of storms that I honestly don't think any of the former Presidents (myself included) could have endured. Without a doubt, the best President that BYB has ever had and a true leader in our community. She is someone that the second you meet, her energy is noticeable and her love for soccer is unmatched.

2021 - The Mariano Family (Tracy, Vince, & Josh)

Without a doubt, at the time they won, the Mariano Family were the most overdue group of people to ever win Sainthood. Vince Mariano is someone who has literally grown up in the section. From his early years as "Popcorn Kid" as a child, to his early adulthood as a critical member of the Operations team for BYB. He is the one who set the stage for what a generation of people who grew up with IXI and the BYB looks like. His father, Josh Mariano, is one of my favorite people in the world. He has expended so much time and energy to the section with the steadfast belief that we're the best supporters in the league. For the majority of time that IXI has existed, gameday operations relied heavily on his efforts and contributions. Finally, Tracy Mariano is the most unheralded people to ever win Sainthood, but one of the most deserving to ever earn it. Tracy spent so many Sundays after games quietly sewing back together banners, contributing on tifo, and ensuring gamedays went well without ever trying to take any glory from it. The BYB is composed of those who get a lot of recognition, as well as those like Tracy who did the work quietly without ever asking for applause. I was genuinely happy all three were recognized for their contributions in 2021.

2022 - Bill Stark

The Marianos were overdue, but no one has waited longer to rightfully become a Saint than Bill Stark. From before IXI ever kicked a ball, Bill Stark has been involved with BYB and the Indy soccer community. He has always been present to contribute in whatever he can, regardless of whether that's being a capo, painting a tifo, helping out at the tailgate, helping out with the Union Jack Cup (RIP), or being present in any other way he can. Bill's optimism and energy have left their fingerprints all over the culture and identity of the BYB. In the past few years, Bill has found himself as one of the last original members of Slaughterhouse-19, contributing his institutional knowledge on the BYB Board of Directors. It is fantastic that someone who has given so much of who they are to IXI's supporter culture from day one is finally recognized as a Slaughterhouse Patron Saint.