Friday, September 18, 2015 - by B.B. Branton
NCAA and high school track champions, a pair of teammates who were also May Queens, a wrestling hall of famer, former coaches, multi-sport athletes and a longtime principal highlight the second class of the East Ridge High School Hall of Fame.
The 10 newest members of the school’s hall of fame will be inducted next Friday (Sept. 25) during halftime of the East Ridge-Hixson football game at Raymond James Stadium.
From Lynn Fox (NCAA champion, 4x100 relay) and Becky Herd Lively (TSSAA state mile champ) who could really run, to May Queens in successive years - Leslie Williamson, the state’s best shooter a half century ago, and Cheryl Gannon (basketball and volleyball teammates) - to Lynn Goss who had his hand raised as champion on the wrestling mat many a weekend in the mid-60s, to all-city (Jimmy Starling and Chuck Strickland) and all-state (Mike Odom) football players to the late Mike Olinger who coached several sports and Ed Foster who served as school principal for 11 years.
“This is a great hall of fame class and a good representation of the 1960s and beyond,” said hall of fame committee chair Catherine Neely.
“We hope that many East Ridge alums and friends and family members of the inductees will be in attendance next week to honor these worthy athletes, coaches and administrators.”
Class of 2015
ED FOSTER– PRINCIPAL, 1988-98 … ASSISTANT PRINCIPAL, 1986-1987 … member of the TSSAA Legislative Council … Halls of Fame: Greater Chattanooga Sports
2. LYNN FOX - FOOTBALL, WRESTLING, TRACK - 1966-1968 - 1973 NCAA champion in the 4x100 relay team for U. of Memphis … Missouri Valley 7-time Sprint Champion ... Halls of Fame: U. of Memphis and Greater Chattanooga Sports
3. CHERYL GANNON - BASKETBALL, VOLLEYBALL, CHEERLEADING - 1966-1968 - All District, Region - State in Basketball, Volleyball – May Queen in spring 1968
4. LYNN GOSS - WRESTLING, FOOTBALL, BASEBALL - 1965-1967 - Coached wrestling, cross country and track; 1977-1986 - State Champion Wrestler - 1966-67, member of Pioneer state championship teams in 1966 and 1967 … coached Pioneers to state team title (wrestling), 1983-84 … first wrestler in Tennessee to earn the sport’s triple crown; individual and team state champion and coached E.R. to state titles (1983-84) … Halls of Fame: National Wresting, Tenn. Chapter and Greater Chattanooga Sports
5. BECKY HERD LIVELY - CROSS COUNTRY AND TRACK - 1985-1987 - State runner-up in Cross Country (Fall 1986) and 1987 Track State Champion - Mile Run - School Record in 3 mile Cross Country Run – school’s female athlete of the year in 1987
6. MIKE ODOM - FOOTBALL, TRACK - 1963-1965 - All State Football 1965, School Record in Rushing - 1965, school record in the Pole Vault - 1965, Played Football in College, Has been on PGA, Canadian, and Asian Golf Tour, Coach of Golf at Decatur Christian School
7. MIKE OLINGER (deceased) - COACH BASKETBALL - 1979-1990 - Basketball coach at ER - 1979-1994, Coached Golf and Track at ER, Coached Basketball at Madisonville. Had record of 235-162 … his son, Travis, will represent his dad at the induction ceremony ... Travis has coached Basketball and Football at ER as well.
8. JIMMY STARLING – FOOTBALL, BASKETBALL and BASEBALL for the Pioneers; 1965-1967 … Honorable Mention All-City in football … Coached same three sports at ER and was coach of the year in all three sports and was coach of year in all three
9. CHUCK STRICKLAND - FOOTBALL, WRESTLING, TRACK - 1968-1970 - Participated in Football, Wrestling, and Track at ER - All City and County in Football, threw the discus and was third in the state in the heavyweight division in 1970 - Played Football at Alabama and was 3 year starter at middle linebacker – All-SEC – led ‘Bama in tackles as a junior and senior … Pre-Season All American – Jr. and Sr. - Team was SEC Champions 1971-1973 .... 32-4 in three seasons, and won National Championship in 1973 – Halls of Fame: Greater Chattanooga Sports
10. LESLIE WILLIAMSON - BASKETBALL, VOLLEYBALL - 1966-1968 - averaged 33 points a game in Sr. year - all City and all District - All tournament and MVP for Basketball and Volleyball in Jr. and Sr. year. – led the state in scoring – Sr. year was All-state Basketball and E.R. May Queen
contact B.B. Branton at email@example.com