By Lorry Myers
He wasn’t a movie star; he wasn’t affluently wealthy or have his own reality TV show. He was just a small town coach and teacher who loved his family, his job and the community he served. For me, Coach Jim Enlow was a patient mentor, a strict boss, a fair disciplinarian, a shoulder to lean on, a faithful friend, someone you want to make proud.
Coach was all that and more.
Each of us has a special someone in our life that we hold in high regard. Someone who showed us the way, someone who shaped who we are, someone who stands up for you.
Coach is one of those people.
Last year, a core committee was established to plan a reunion where former players, students and community members could honor the man who made such a difference in the lives of so many. The planning started in August for a February event that would celebrate Coach’s thirty year career. When Coach Enlow was first approached about this reunion in his honor, he was predictably reluctant. “I don’t need another plaque on my wall,” Coach said.
“But I would like to see everyone again.”
What do you do for a man with too many plaques? You stand up and be counted to show the impact one person can make. On February 9th, at the local high school ball game, those who were influenced by Coach Enlow, are invited to step out onto Enlow Court to pay tribute to a man they hold in high regard. The following day, February 10th, at an afternoon reception, former teammates and classmates will share old stories and recount fond memories with Coach.
I have plenty of those.
Coach came into my life in high school where I would never be the top of my class or the Homecoming Queen or voted most likely to succeed. I was just a crooked- tooth-middle-child-tomboy who followed the crowd because I had no one else to follow. I was jealous sitting in the bleachers watching my brother play sports, knowing there was never a team or a place for me. Then my junior year, an announcement came over the intercom, “Any girls interested in playing on a school basketball team, meet in the gym after school.”
I was the second one there.
For the complete column, please see this week’s edition of the Centralia Fireside Guard.