Letter to the Editor:
I want to take this opportunity to thank the Latta School District, Dr. John Kirby, Superintendent; Mr. William Kyle Berry, Board Chairman; Latta School Board members, Mr. George Liebenrood, Assistant Superintendent; and the Latta School District Athletic Hall of Fame committee for the creation of the Latta School District Athletic Hall of Fame. The development of this hall of fame to honor and celebrate outstanding graduates of Latta Schools is commendable.
I was extremely privileged and blessed to be inducted to the 2019 Latta School District Athletic Hall of Fame on January 24, 2019, along with twelve other accomplished Hall of Fame inductees.
Having been a student of Latta High School some 30 years ago, I can safely say that I never thought I would be inducted into the Athletic Hall of Fame. I grew up around Latta Schools all my life and was a huge Latta Viking fan. I could not wait to wear an LHS jersey and be a Latta Viking!
One might ask what did it take for me to be a Hall of Fame inductee?
God placed some Hall of Fame coaches in my life. Some of their names were Sam Clardy, Jerry Martin, Johnny Dew, Jimmy Ard, and Ron Taylor. These coaches taught me about discipline, hard work, and teamwork. One coach that stood out amongst these coaches was Coach Joe Alseberry. Coach Alseberry molded me into the All-State player I became. He poured a great deal into me. Coach Alseberry challenged me to become a better man and better player in that order. I am grateful for him demanding that I be the best player I could be and teaching me how.
There were some Hall of Fame teachers and administrators, who did not care about athletic success or rankings. They demanded excellence in the classroom. They stressed accountability and focus. The experiences they instilled in me have taken me farther than I ever knew.
From 1986 to 1990, I had some Hall of Fame teammates and friends at Latta High School. There are too many to name! Each of them challenged me to be a great player, team captain, leader, and friend. We had some hard-fought battles; won a few, lost a few. However, I know that our trials and struggles have made all the difference.
I have several friends, extended family members, and colleagues that I met or befriended after I graduated from LHS in 1990. I thank them for being an anchor in my life! The loyalty, dedication, and leadership that many of you know me by is a result of the nurturing life-lessons gleaned at Latta High School.
I thank all my family members who supported me throughout my life. I appreciate my Hall of Fame wife, Zenobia, and Hall of Fame, son, Collin. They have been my support. Thank you for inspiring me in so many ways. I’m blessed to have each of you in my life.
Lastly, I was blessed to have some Hall of Fame parents, Mr. Lannie and Mrs. Viola Edwards. My parents sacrificed their agendas to get me to and from practices and games. My parents never missed an away game – through years of football, basketball and track seasons. They preached academics came first, never quit, always to be positive, and always do my best.
This “good and perfect” gift that was honed on the football fields, basketball courts, and track throwing circles at Latta High School – God blessed me! It has brought many great opportunities.
Again, I thank the Latta School District for inducting me into the Latta School District Athletic Hall of Fame.
Dr. Gerard Edwards
4119 Tiffany Dr
Florence, SC 29501
Letter to the Editor: