Sharing Competitive Spirit, Passion Has Brought Dill Brothers Closer

by Brad Joyal
Dill brothers Reed, left, and Paytah have grown closer while competing alongside one another on Nauset’s boys track and field team.
 BRAD JOYAL PHOTO Dill brothers Reed, left, and Paytah have grown closer while competing alongside one another on Nauset’s boys track and field team.

NORTH EASTHAM – Not every set of siblings have the chance to compete alongside one another during their high school years.

The Dill brothers — Paytah, a senior, and Reed, a sophomore — don’t take the opportunity for granted.

Although the brothers push each other to be better on the track and field, their connection has also served as an example of just how special a brotherhood’s bond can be.

“It’s the definition of what you’d expect brotherhood to be and what you’d hope family can look like,” said their mother, Janice. “When you separate yourself as a parent from that and watch how two people can have each other’s back, be each other’s biggest fan, be each other’s biggest teacher and go through these highs and lows together — it’s been a gift.”

The brothers’ time is nearing an end as Nauset prepares for the state regionals and All-State meets. Paytah is set to attend Northeastern University, where he hopes to join the track team as a walk-on. Reed is ready to continue his high school career without his older brother, who has taught him many valuable life lessons, most notably the power of perseverance.

“I spent five days at Mass General last spring,” Paytah said. “The doctors couldn’t figure out what it was, something with my kidneys. I couldn’t walk, I couldn’t move. I was out the entire season, so getting to come back is super awesome. Being back and in such a good place with the team, it’s emotional and amazing.”

Paytah’s illness limited the events he was able to compete in, including the strenuous 400-meter hurdle, a taxing event that Paytah cherished. In his absence, Reed has tackled the event while continuing to instill the knowledge his older brother has passed on to him.

“I know it’s cliche, but never giving up and leaving everything on the track,” Reed answered when asked about the most valuable lessons he’s learned from Paytah. “When he would run the 400 hurdles, he would just die for this event. He loved it so much, so that’s keeping me going and I try to do that.”

The brothers pride themselves on being good, supportive teammates as much as dynamic athletes. That winning combination has made them an impactful part of the team while also strengthening the bond they share as brothers.

“It’s been awesome,” Reed said. “It’s so much fun because I get to go to practice with him everyday and then we drive home together. We do similar events, so we’re always together. I get that some people might not like being with their siblings all the time, but I’ve really enjoyed it and I’m going to miss him a lot.”

Paytah said competing alongside Reed has been “the most amazing thing ever.”

“I love watching him,” the senior said. “He’s my biggest fan, I’m his biggest fan. We got to go to [Indoor] Nationals together in the winter, which was an awesome

experience. It’s incredible because we do some of the same events, and we really push each other to be better.”