Hawley track, cross country, and football coach Jimmy Doyle received an impressive retirement party from a distance Friday.
Jimmy Doyle said, “We were sitting around the table just talking and somebody said what’s going on out there? I looked out and saw a police car and then heard the sirens.”
It was the sound of a legendary career coming to a close, with a parade of cars with coaches, past and present students, and Hawley residents following behind.
Doyle said, “You stay some place for as long as I have, 41 years at that place, a lot of these are the kids I started out with and I’ve coached their kids.”
Mitch Ables said, “We were just kind of talking about it, some way we could recognize him for what he’s done for Hawley and the coaching profession. Some people are doing stuff like this so we took it and ran with it.”
Friday, the track and field, cross country, and assistant football coach had a chance to celebrate his birthday and retirement at the same time by saying hello to the lives he impacted while adding to his peach ring collection.
Doyle said, “They know that I like peach rings, that’s one of those things, I eat peach rings. I won’t have to buy peach rings for a year now or two years.”
Coach Doyle was a teacher and coach for 43 years, spending all but two at Hawley High School. And while the school closing due to the coronavirus outbreak abruptly ended his career, the Hawley community wasn’t about to let that stop them from a proper sendoff.
Doyle said, “It just shows what a good place Hawley is to be and to work and I’ve enjoyed all the years I’ve been there.”
Ables said, “If I’ve ever needed anything or needed a suggestion about something, he was always there for me to kind of rely on. He’s seen it all. It’s going to be hard to replace him at Hawley.”
Doyle said, “Just to have that time to say a little goodbye, that was very nice.”