Sometimes, a high school coach not only leaves a lasting impression on players but a community as well.
John Meadows fit that description, spending seven seasons as a football coach in Scottsboro. As one of his former players, Don Webb, said this week, “He was a coach that you wanted to do your very best for. It takes a special person to affect people like that.”
Meadows died Wednesday, at the age of 94. A member of the Greatest Generation, he fought in World War II before embarking on a coaching career that affected high school boys in Alabama and Tennessee.
He made them winners, not only on the field, but also in the game of life. At every stop in his coaching career, Meadows fielded winning teams.
In Scottsboro, from 1959-1965, he was as good, or better, than there has ever been, capping his stint with the school’s only football state championship his last season.
Meadows moved on after that season, winding up in Tennessee years later where he won another state championship in 1982.
He came back to Scottsboro after retirement, proving what the place meant to him. And, likewise, the he meant much to the city.