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Lafayette High to Celebrate 40th Anniversary This Weekend

lafayetteMel Jones remembers when Lafayette High School opened its doors for the first time “like it was yesterday.”

As the first integrated high school in Williamsburg back in 1973, he recalls a “magical” experience of watching a group of white and black young men come together and turn the Rams’ 4-6 football team into a 12-1 powerhouse in that first season.

“We were the second best team in the state,” said Jones, who helped coach the football team from 1973-89. “But it wasn’t the wins and losses as much as how those boys came together. There was no white or black, and that set the tone for years to follow.”

Forty years to be exact.

Jones, who, in addition to coaching football for 17 years is entering his 41st season as the Rams’ track coach, will help celebrate that milestone as he, along with one other coach and 14 former athletes from the school, are inducted into the school’s Hall of Fame as part of the Rams’ 40-year anniversary celebration.

“I’ve been a lot of places and around a lot of schools, but none have impressed me like Lafayette,” Jones said. “And I’m not just saying that because I’ve been here so long; I’ve been here so long because it’s true. All [the alumni] care about the school and about its reputation. I’m just blessed to have been given the chance to help all these kids and help them be successful.”

The Hall of Fame luncheon, scheduled for 11 a.m. Friday at Ford’s Colony, is one of several events being planned by the school for Friday and Saturday.

After the luncheon, there will be a 1:20 p.m. pep rally at the school followed by a 4 p.m. Homecoming parade in Colonial Williamsburg.

A cookout will then be held at 5:30 p.m. before the Rams’ sixth Hall of Fame class, including Jones, is announced prior to the 7 p.m. kickoff of the Rams’ homecoming football game against Smithfield at Wanner Stadium.

Bruton girls basketball coach Terrence Green (left) and Lafayette girls basketball coach Chris Brown (right) will play in the 2 p.m. alumni game on Saturday.

Bruton girls basketball coach Terrence Green (left) and Lafayette girls basketball coach Chris Brown (right) will play in the 2 p.m. alumni game on Saturday.

The celebrations will continue Saturday as Lafayette’s girls basketball coach Chris Brown, who starred on the Rams’ boys basketball team in the mid 1980s, will host an alumni basketball game at Williamsburg Christian Academy at 2 p.m. Brown’s team will take on a Bruton High alumni squad headed by Panthers’ girls basketball coach Terrence Green, who was a three-year standout for Bruton’s boys team from 2005-07.

Brown said both teams will feature some of the school’s most prestigious alumni, including former Bruton High football and basketball star Bryan Randall, who guided the Panthers to their only state football title in 2001, as well as Chris’ brother, Gary Brown (’80), a former all-state guard and Peninsula District Player of the Year.

Later Saturday evening, Brown will also host an all-black attire dance function with DJ Heart Attack of the radio station 103 JAMZ at the Historic Triangle building beginning at 7 p.m. Cost is $15 in advance and $20 at the door.

Below are the alumni and coaches who will be inducted into the Hall of Fame this weekend. Click here for more information on the honorees.

  • Aaron Nester, class of 2009, swimming
  • Amy Hundley, class of 2001, track and field
  • Ashley Reyher, class of 2002, cross-country/volleyball/tennis
  • Brendan Summers, class of 2002, football
  • Rev. Dr. Calvin Gray, class of 1976, football/basketball/track
  • Carolyn Cross, class of 2002, soccer/cross-country
  • Chris Luzar, class of 1997, football/basketball/track
  • Connor Hughes, class of 2002, football/soccer
  • Fran Hermance, coach, softball/field hockey
  • Karen Seaman, class of 1999, volleyball
  • Lauren Wenger, class of 2001, swimming
  • Mel Jones, coach, football/track
  • Michele Niles, class of 1990, field hockey/swimming
  • Rian Thompson, class of 1999, football/track/basketball
  • Rondollyn Givens, class of 1978, basketball/track
  • Ross Pinkett, class of 2003, football

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Posted by on October 17, 2013. Filed under Sports. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

5 Responses to Lafayette High to Celebrate 40th Anniversary This Weekend

  1. Hall of Fame Reply

    October 21, 2013 at 3:37 pm

    What happened to Pam Christian. I’m surprised she is not in the Hall of Fame. Wasn’t she the Ram’s first female state champion in track and field in 1979?

  2. John Burford Reply

    October 19, 2013 at 12:11 pm

    Congratulations to all, well done!

  3. Amanda Ratcliffe (Sickal) Reply

    October 17, 2013 at 12:31 pm

    Proud to have gone to Lafayette High School man there was some good times with some good people…..Thanks for all the memories

  4. Karen Peterson Reply

    October 17, 2013 at 10:13 am

    This is awesome! Is there a list of all past inductees?

    • A LHS fan Reply

      October 17, 2013 at 10:23 am

      The list needs to had Karen Davidson, class of 1986, swimming :)

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