TWIN FALLS, Idaho ( KMVT / KSVT ) The College of Southern Idaho community continues to mourn the loss of head volleyball coach Heidi Cartisser.
She passed away in her sleep Tuesday morning at the age of 44. Her death is being felt not just by the CSI community, but beyond.
The CSI Volleyball team has boasted decades of success; 11 national championship banners greet visitors inside the hallway of the gymnasium.
The last three, 2009, 2012 and 2015, Heidi Cartisser was the head coach, with her husband Jim as the assistant.
Athletic director Joel Bate exclaimed (she's a) "tenacious coach and a great competitor."
Based on the established pattern, the team was due for another championship next fall. But unfortunately for volleyball fans, this leader and mother figure won't be roaming the sidelines in the Golden Eagles' championship quest.
Bate explained, "she was maybe talking about volleyball, but everything had a sense of metaphor she was talking about life and life skills. And the players that went two years or anytime through her program received some great advice on the game of life."
The college has been inundated with condolences.
"Yesterday I probably looked at over 200 text messages, emails, phone calls from people from all over the country. If you played against Heidi, they were contacting us about what they could do." he said.
And concern for Jim and their five children.
Bate added, "our communities are incredible here that we have infrastructure built in to help each other in times of crisis. Right now I know that Jim and the family are well taken care of, there's an army of people with food. But I'm concerned about Jim and the family a month from now and that's when the community can help out."
Many have inquired about ways to help.
For those of you locally looking to donate, there will be an account set up Thursday morning at DL Evans Bank. 100% of the money goes to the family. Please make your checks out to the "Heidi Cartisser Benefit" account.
Meanwhile, for an online option, the Concordia College volleyball coach and Jim's best man set up a GoFundMe page https://www.gofundme.com/the-best-man-and-family-i-know-vb.
Cartisser's funeral is next Wednesday, December 27th at 10 am inside the gymnasium. The college feels it's a perfect place to hold such an occasion.