Washington to honor Walk of Fame class of 2012 on Friday
It’s not very often that the we take the opportunity to truly thank someone for all the great deeds they have done, but on Friday Washington High School will do just that is it welcomes Charles Daniels, Philip Mobley, Bruce Linton and the 1975 and ’76 basketball teams into the Washington Walk of Fame.
Collectively, the 2012 class has touched the lives of not just Washington High School, but the city of Washington as well, and on Friday night during halftime of the Pam Pack’s battle with Northside their great deeds will be recognized during their enshrinement ceremony.
“As a Washington High School alum, coach/athletic director and WOF member, I consider it a privilege to be a part of such a special night,” said Allison Jones. “I enjoy hearing all of the ‘walks down memory lane’ that come along with a night like this. I never get tired of hearing about the ‘glory days.’”
As Pam Pack alum and a shop teacher at Washington High School for the past 23 years, Charles Daniels has witnessed plenty of glory days and has had a hand in most, literaly.
Daniels has used those hands to help build concession stands, paint the numbers and line markers on football fields as well as players’ names and numbers on senior nights, along with crafting countless chairs, steps and bleachers. Odds are if you ever attended any kind of Washington sporting event you either sat down, stepped on, looked at or bought something from something Daniels helped build.
“I graduated Washington High School in 1970 and I have always been a diehard Pam Pack fan,” Daniels said. “I just try to help wherever I can.”
Jones said Daniels’ contributions to Washington High School are endless.
“Charles Daniels, affectionately known as ‘Mr. D’ here at Washington High School, has been a construction teacher at WHS for 23 years and has been a part of WHS athletics as long as he has been a teacher here,” Jones said. “Mr. Daniels has been instrumental in building athletic facilities, such as the baseball concession stand and staircase, the softball concession stand and the athletic utility shed that houses all of our field maintenance equipment just to name a few his contributions.
“He built the first ever ‘Pack House’ tunnel that the football team runs through on home game nights. If you can see it on our athletic fields, he either built it or was asked to fix it at some point. He keeps us going around here. He just enjoys helping out the WHS coaches and we consider him a huge part of the WHS athletic family.”
Also a huge part of the Washington athletic family is Philip Mobley, a Stokes native who has been a member of the Washington Recreation Dept. from 1975 until he retired this past July as the Washington Recreation Dept. director. Mobley presided over a joint use agreement in the 1980s that set the stage for Washington schools and the Washington Recreation Dept. to share facilities.
“It was a win-win situation for the public and the citizens,” Mobley said. “We didn’t have to go out and build new ball fields at that time. … We were able to trade back and forth.”
The criteria for a person to be inducted into the Washington Walk of Fame is that a person must have made major contributions to either Washington High School or the city of Washington and Mobley, who was a long time member of the Washington Walk of Fame voting committee, has done both.
Mobley was not in attendance when voting for the class of 2012 took place and said he was shocked when he received a letter stating that he was to be inducted into the Washington Walk of Fame.
“I got the letter and I didn’t quite understand it. Then I read it again and I said good gracious,” Mobley said.
Brownie Futrell, who is also a longtime member of the WOF committee and former chairman of the Washington City Board of Education said Mobley’s recognition for his efforts is long overdue.
“As it relates to Washington High School and the former Washington City schools I don’t think Phil has ever gotten the proper credit for the joint use agreement between the school board and the city of Washington that allowed both organizations to use each others facilities and save the tax payers countless amounts of money,” Futrell said. “I think that’s Phil’s greatest accomplishment as it relates to Washington High School and the city school system.”
The 1975 and ’76 basketball teams also had several great accomplishments as the Pam Pack went a combined 44-6 during that two-year span. Coached by the legendary Dave Smith, who is also a WOF member, the Pam Pack reached the state championship in both 1975 and 76 and lost each contest by a mere two points.
“I’m elated for them,” Smith said. “We really had some good players on that team. We went 19-5 in 1975 with an 11-1 conference record and in 76 we were 25-1 with a conference record of 12-0.”
The members of the 1975 team were: Mike Boyd, Wilson Edwards, Kenny Gray, James Hatchel, Gray Hodges, Ronnie Moore, Thomas Rodgers, Kenny Rogers, Milton Simmons, Tyrone Smith, Albert Spencer, Tony Ward, Carl Williams and James Woolard.
Featured on the 1976 roster were: Boyd, Gray, Hodges, Alvis Rogers, Kenny Rogers, Everson Simmons, Milton Simmons, Smith, Spencer, Hale Stephenson, Roy Thompson, Ward, Williams and Donnie Williams
Those teams were led by Kenny Rogers, who would accept a football scholarship to UNC, along with Albert Spencer, who received a scholarship to play basketball at Oral Robert, and Smith said that elite athleticism was the key to those teams’ success.
“We had some size and we ran a fast-paced offence and multiple defenses,” Smith said.
Also starring on the basketball court was Bruce Linton, who in the 1966-67 season led the Pam Pack with 16.1 points per game in his senior year en route to being named to the all-Northeast Conference team and Pam Pack MVP.
Linton was also a tremendous tennis player as he was a Northeast Conference doubles champion in his junior and senior seasons. Linton also won a conference crown in singles play as senior before accepting a scholarship to play tennis at East Carolina University.
“I’m very honored and humbled to be inducted into the Walk of Fame,” Linton said.
While Linton starred on both courts, the 6-2 power forward’s heart always remained on the hardwood.
“The basketball achievements were most rewarding to me,” Linton said. “I wish my team could have done some of the stuff that Dominique Wilkins’ teams did.”
Linton said what he loved most about playing sports at Washington High School was his being around his teammates.
“I feel like I was a team player, that was very important to me,” Linton said. “Tennis is a little bit more of an individual sport and I think that’s why I liked basketball so much. I had a passion for the game and it allowed me to interact with my teammates and achieve a common goal.”