By Randy Arrington
LURAY — The 1958 Luray High School football team went 10-0. The Bulldogs only had 13 points scored against them that year, while they piled up 260.
Yet, they are not listed on any banner on the walls of the LHS gymnasium.
“People begin to forget that they existed,” said Chris Marston, LHS Class of ‘88.
In the 1930s, the LHS baseball team had three of its 12 players move on to the professional level, including names like Floyd Baker and Benny Huffman.
“There were teams around that wouldn’t play Luray because they were that good,” Marston said.
Huffman went on to be enshrined in the Scouting Hall of Fame, a special section of the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y.
In 1967, Mason Lockridge led an integrated LHS basketball team to a state title — four years before the T.C. Williams’ 1971 state championship football season that was made famous in the award-winning motion picture “Remember the Titans.”
“There’s a lot of stories from the past that people are going to lose sight of and stop celebrating and telling stories about,” Marston said. “I want to capture them before they are lost.”
Toward that end, the LHS alum has formed a nine-member board of directors for the first LHS Athletic Hall of Fame. All members are formerly connected to LHS athletics in some way. Marston will serve as the non-voting chairman of the group, which includes:
- Tracie Dickson, wife of a former coach in two sports at LHS;
- Steve Foltz, a former athlete and current parent of an LHS student;
- Eddie Hall, a former student manager who received the first Hap Heiser Award;
- Steve Johnson, former athlete, teacher, coach;
- Gracie King, former coach;
- Jim Logan, former athlete, coach, teacher;
- Audrey Smith, former administrator;
- Steve Thompson, former coach;
- Kent Tobin, former athlete, longtime booster.
The inaugural class of the newly formed Athletic Hall of Fame will be announced in September. A special ceremony will be held during a home football game on Friday night, with an awards dinner the following evening. The first class is expected to include 20 inductees, who will receive aged-brass medals to mark their induction.
“We wanted to start off with a strong group,” Marston said. “We will probably scale back after the first year.”
Nomination forms must be received by the board of directors by April 1. Nominees will then be contacted by the board to fill out more detailed information about themselves by May 1. During the voting process, nominees must receive 75 percent of the ballots to be inducted.
Athletic Hall of Fame nominations may be submitted to the board of directors under the following guidelines:
- Nominee must be out of school for 10 years;
- Applicant can’t nominate themselves;
- Nominations may come from the public or board members;
- Each submission should include a letter of recommendation, and a completed four-page application form.
The LHS Athletic Hall of Fame formed in November 2019 as a non-profit organization operating separate from Page County Public Schools. However, Marston says he has contacted, and has the support of, LHS Principal Nikki Clark and LHS Athletic Director Don Ehlers.
The organization’s first-year fundraising goal is $5,000. The funds will pay for the awards and setting up a website.
A fundraising concert dubbed the “Hall of Fame Red, White and Bluegrass Benefit” will be held at 7 p.m. Saturday, May 23 at the LHS auditorium. The benefit concert will feature the popular bluegrass band Nothin’ Fancy, with special guest Blue Ridge Thunder (featuring Page County talent) to open things up. Tickets will go on sale March 9 for $20 each.
In a response letter agreeing to perform for the benefit concert, the members of Nothin’ Fancy stated: “We were excited to be asked to participate and are happy to support this endeavor. It’s always great when we can be part of something that benefits the recognition of the accomplishments of athletes, coaches and the school that they represent.”
For more information about donating to the LHS Athletic Hall of Fame, submitting a nomination form, sponsoring the benefit concert or other details, contact Chairman Chris Marston at (540) 742-1743 or email@example.com, or visit their Facebook page.
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