AHSAA Mourns Deaths Of Three Coaches
AHSAA member schools are mourning the deaths of three coaches who died during the last week after extended illnesses.
Billy Livings, the first head football coach in Jeff Davis High School history, died Oct. 17, following a stroke due from complications in surgery in Vero Beach (FL).
Saint James middle school volleyball coach Clara Johnson, 48, died Oct. 16 after an extended bout with cancer.
Longtime Baldwin County High School head baseball coach Jerry Wright passed away Oct. 14 after battling cancer for more than a year.
Livings, 75, compiled a 103-23-4 record at Jeff Davis in 11 seasons (1968–1979). His last five teams were 47-1-1 in the regular season with one state title. The Vols also won 32 straight games in a streak that ended in 1979. He then moved to Vero Beach where his teams were 211-86. He retired in 2006 with an overall career record of 314-109-4 and the Vero Beach stadium was named in his honor. He was inducted into the Alabama High School Sports Hall of Fame in 2007.
Johnson, 48, who resided in Fort Deposit, was a very popular teacher and volleyball coach at Saint James School. An inspiration to her students during her career and throughout her battle with cancer, she coached the middle school team until her health prevented further coaching in 2010. Her daughter Casey then left the University of Alabama where she was a student and returned to Montgomery to coach the team.
Wright, 58, a native of Rabun in Baldwin County, coached and taught at several AHSAA schools, including McGill-Toolen and Robertsdale. He moved to Baldwin County in 1989 as head baseball coach and assistant football coach and compiled a 491-290 baseball record overall with a 383-245 mark. His teams at Bay Minette won seven area titles and had 11 playoff appearances. He was inducted into the Baldwin County Varsity Coaches Association Hall of Fame, the Baldwin County High School Athletic Hall of Fame and the Alabama Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame.