g loses a great coach and mentor.
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
This morning my daughter Sarah and her friend went to the high school weight room to lift weights. When they got to the parking lot they heard gunshots. They saw a man running out of the weight room with a gun. He was screaming,"I want to serve God, not Satan."
He put the gun in his pocket and ran away. Then a bunch of students came running out of the weight room screaming. She and her friend found out that Coach Ed Thomas was shot. The ambulance took him away and Sarah and her friend were taken to a neighboring house. That is where she called me. I was glad she was okay.
As the day progressed, we found out that Coach Thomas didn't make. He had suffered point blank gun shot wounds, many to his head. The whole community was in shock and mourning. The swimming pool closed and so did the grocery store.
Not only was he a great coach, he was a mentor. After the tornado hit last year, he was one of the pivotal people who inspired the community to move on and rebuild. He was loved by his football players. Four of them are in the NFL today. He was loved by his students. He was a social studies teacher. He was loved by his community. Season after season, his football players would go undefeated in the regular season, but it was more than that. He taught his players to play fair and sportsmanlike. He taught them that one's character was more important than winning football games. He taught them to work hard on the football field and in life as well.
The man who shot him has been caught and is in jail now. He was a former student from the class of 2003 and a former football player. He has lots and lots of problems. His father and Coach Thomas would get together regularly to pray for this man. That his life would somehow turn around. That is just the way Coach Thomas was.