Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

March 19, 2014

McDowell County Hall of Fame plaques to be used by W.Va. Humanities Counsel

Staff reports
Bluefield Daily Telegraph

WELCH — The West Virginia Humanities Counsel is sponsoring a traveling exhibit of Home Town Teams, and the McDowell Sports Hall of Fame is helping to make it happens.

The Larry Harless Center in Gilbert is participating in a traveling exhibit sponsored by the Smithsonian Institute to recognize sports in American Culture starting on March 25 and running through May 5.

According to Wayne Hicks, the president of the Welch Lions Club-sponsored McDowell County Sports Hall of Fame, seven plaques have been donated to Gilbert for use while the exhibit is on display.

They include Garnett Edwards, an All-America track performer at West Virginia University, Gordon Lambert, an All-America football player at Tennessee-Martin and a member of the Denver Broncos, and Tom Beasley, who played at Virginia Tech, and later starred with the Pittsburgh Steelers and Washington Redskins.

Others include Jennings Boyd, the ultra-successful boys basketball coach at Northfork High School, Joe Freidl, Sr., a three-sport standout at Gary and Western Kentucky University, Mario Poletti, long-time football coach at Big Creek, and Ira Blankenship, who played at Iaeger and later coached at Davis & Elkins and Concord. Gilbert is the only location south of Charleston where the exhibit will be placed. Other locations are    Preston County, Randolp County, Weirton and Morgantown.

The Welch Lions Club will be sponsoring its fourth Hall of Fame induction ceremony to induct its 10 newest members on June 8 at Mount View High School starting at 2 p.m.

Anyone wishing to make a tax-free donation to help with the Hall of Fame expenses can mail a check to the Welch Lions Club HOF, Box 197, Welch, W.VA., 24801, or call Hicks for more information at (304) 436-2562.