My Blog List

Thursday, December 29, 2011

A night to remember in Marlette

Paul Adams filed this story from Marlette late Wednesday night...


MARLETTE — Terry Reid and his grandson Kyle Hall left an indelible mark on the Marlette high school gymnasium — formerly known as Raider Pavilion.
Wednesday, the duo was immortalized.
During separate ceremonies, the gym was renamed Terry “Coach” Reid Gymnasium and a scoreboard was dedicated in the honor of Hall. Hall, who tragically died in an automobile accident earlier this year, also had his No. 35 retired.
“My wife and I both know that during his short time, our son touched many people’s lives,” said Kyle’s father, Mike Hall. 
“We can only hope that this memorial will help people to remember him.”
Hall was a standout athlete, but basketball was his passion. Prior to the accident, he spent every moment he could preparing for his collegiate career at Alma College.
“It’s special, especially with Kyle,” said Reid of the night.
“The kid worked his butt off this summer. We were in here three days a week, shooting and lifting three, four hours per day.
“We developed a special relationship, so to have it all tonight... He and I will always be in this gym.”
Mike Hall fought back tears as he was surrounded by his family while speaking to the near-capacity crowd. 
Many in attendance were wearing shirts to honor Kyle.
“Some of the happiest moments of his life were spent playing basketball and that’s how he would want to be remembered,” Hall said.
It’s only been five months since the accident. Hall said he and his wife are still coming to terms with it.
“I wish I could report that my wife and I are doing fine,” he said. “Sadly, that is not the case.
“For us, reality has set in. A reality that every morning will begin agonizing over what we have lost and thinking about what could have been.
“Only with the love and consideration of this wonderful community am I able stand here today.”
Although Hall’s message was somber, he was able to deliver a moment of levity while talking about his son’s nickname — Big Red.
“My son was proud to be a Red Raider,” he said. “And he loved his nickname. On more than one occasion, he tried to convince me that the cheerleader’s cheer, ‘Go Big Red’ was for him.”
Hall’s final words were powerful and emotional as he had to pause more than once to compose himself. 
“(We) were with him at Alma College in their gymnasium,” he said. “He just committed to play basketball there. He looked up at their beautiful, huge scoreboard. It had a very large JumboTron on it. 
“He looked at me with those beautiful brown eyes. He said ‘Daddyo, I’m going to light that scoreboard up.’ Son, you never got the opportunity to do that. (But) you will light this scoreboard up for many years.”
During halftime of the boys game, Reid, who amassed over 400 coaching victories in basketball, was honored.
He came to Marlette in 1972. During that time, he coached girls basketball, boys basketball and served as athletic director.
Reid also coached baseball, junior varsity football, junior varsity and freshmen basketball, along with many volunteer coaching roles.
In the classroom, he taught U.S. history, world history and physical education.
“I feel very honored and privileged that Marlette had me for 40 years,” Reid said. “And if they want me for 40 more, I’m still here.
“This isn’t why I coached. It wasn’t about having a gym named. It was about helping people. I thank you for that, I thank you very much.”
Reid called out his wife Jackie to center court.
“This lady has put up with me for 52 years,” he said. “She was there if I needed lifting up. She was there encouraging all the time. That’s why I took the girls job. She encouraged me to take it.”
Many of Reid’s former players and students were in attendance. He had a message for them.
“You people that are here tonight and all those who played for me... That were in my classrooms... That listened to my wonderful phrases,” he said. “I want you to know that you mean so much to me. You mean so much to Jackie. What you’ve done for our life, I just hope in return we did just something small that made a difference in your life. 
“From the bottom of my heart, I thank each and every person here. I thank everyone that played ball for me.”
Reid also talked about his coaching philosophies.
“This court wasn’t basketball, this court was life,” he said. “This reflects life. We compete for positions, we work as team, we communicate, we suffer when things are going bad, we lifted each other up. Isn’t that life? Isn’t that marriage? Isn’t that the workplace? 
“I’ve always believed that and I will believe it until the day I die.”
Under the west basket reads: “Terry ‘Coach’ Reid Gymnasium. Honoring the memory of his grandson Kyle Hall and a career dedicated to the youth of Marlette.” 
Reid said he’s still not used to seeing it and doesn’t know if he ever will.
“It’s uncomfortable,” he said. “I didn’t put it up there, the kids did. Am I proud? Yes. The greatest thing about it is that how often do they dedicate something to someone who is still alive?
“I feel very blessed that I’m here. If anyone wants to be critical of a small town, don’t bring it to me.
“They’re always there for you.
“I love this community. It’s why I came to a small community and it hasn’t failed us.”

Terry Reid waves to the crowd after Marlette’s gym was renamed after him.


The scoreboard on the east wall of the Terry “Coach” Reid Gymnasium was dedicated in honor of Kyle Hall, who died in an automobile accident earlier this year.

No comments: