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Legendary coach set to speak Nov. 13

Nov. 02, 2012 @ 12:00 AM

HURRICANE -- Legendary coach and All-American football player Leon McCoy will be the guest speaker for the 18th Annual Putnam County-wide Thanksgiving Dinner on Tuesday, Nov. 13, in the Community Meeting Room of First State Bank, 3754 Teays Valley Road, Hurricane.

The luncheon will begin at 11:30 a.m., and continue to 1 p.m.

This year's dinner is open to anyone in Putnam and neighboring counties who wishes to attend. Tickets are $15, payable at the door by check or cash, which purchases a traditional Thanksgiving dinner, dessert and drinks. Reservations must be made by noon on Monday, Nov. 12, by calling Tina McComas at 304-562-2606 or 304-638-3493.

McCoy, a Charleston native, became a legendary coach at Winfield High, where his 213-68-1 record included state championships in 1985 and 1987 (13-0 teams) and five other 10-0 regular seasons. He coached the Generals to 11 playoff appearances, including seven in a row and won 41 consecutive games, a state record.

McCoy was a two-time All-State football player at Charleston High; a starter at center for seven games as a University of Tennessee freshman in 1947, after which he left the Vols and headed home to Morris Harvey College, where he was an All-West Virginia Conference pick in 1949, '50 and '51 and an All-American in 1950.

In addition to football and weight training, he played the part of "Lil Abner" in an Al Capp film shown worldwide. He has been teaching and coaching for 57 years.

The Rev. Dr. Melissa Pratt of Teays Valley Church of God will lead music for the luncheon. There will also be the traditional "For This We Give Thanks" presentation.

Tina McComas, president of the Putnam Rotary Club, is asking all who attend to bring non-perishable food items to help replenish the various community food cupboards throughout the county. Supplies are depleted in all of them.

Parking is also available at The Gallery, beside the bank. The meal will be catered by The Gallery.