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On the death of H. Lester Hooker, Jr.

Agreed to by the Senate, February 3, 2000
Agreed to by the House of Delegates, February 11, 2000

WHEREAS, H. Lester Hooker, Jr., a legendary coach at the University of Richmond and The College of William and Mary and a member of both schools’ athletic halls of fame, died on May 13, 1999; and

WHEREAS, a native of Stuart, Lester Hooker graduated from Thomas Jefferson High School in Richmond and was attending The College of William and Mary when World War II interrupted his college career; and

WHEREAS, following service with the United States Army Air Force in World War II, Lester Hooker returned to William and Mary, earned his degree, and began his career at Smithfield High School, where he introduced football and coached all sports; and

WHEREAS, following coaching stints at Woodrow Wilson High School in Danville and Hopewell High School, Lester Hooker returned to his alma mater to coach basketball, then accepted the position of head basketball coach at the University of Richmond; and

WHEREAS, Lester Hooker returned to William and Mary as athletic director in 1963, introduced five new intercollegiate sports, and presided over a flourishing athletic program that won the Southern Conference Cup in 1969, 1970, and 1971; and

WHEREAS, during his tenure as athletic director, Lester Hooker hired Marv Levy and Lou Holtz as football coaches, and both men have since become among the most successful and prominent head coaches in the nation; and

WHEREAS, Lester Hooker oversaw the construction of William and Mary Hall, and in 1972 he relinquished his role as athletic director to concentrate on his position as director of William and Mary Hall; and

WHEREAS, among Lester Hooker’s numerous awards, he was named Virginia Coach of the Year four times, won the Virginia Sportswriters and Sportscasters Award in 1966, and was inducted into the William and Mary Athletic Hall of Fame, the University of Richmond Athletic Hall of Fame, and the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame; and

WHEREAS, in addition to his coaching and administrative duties, Lester Hooker found time for a teaching career, beginning as an assistant professor of education, later becoming associate professor, and retiring as associate professor of physical education, emeritus; and

WHEREAS, a talented and dedicated coach, administrator, and teacher, Lester Hooker leaves a lasting legacy of service to The College of William and Mary and to intercollegiate athletics in the Commonwealth; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED by the Senate, the House of Delegates concurring, That the General Assembly note with sadness the passing of a legendary coach, H. Lester Hooker, Jr.; and, be it

RESOLVED FURTHER, That the Clerk of the Senate prepare a copy of this resolution for presentation to the family of H. Lester Hooker, Jr., as an expression of the high regard in which his memory is held by the members of the General Assembly and the citizens of Virginia.

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