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Hall inducts six new members
SoVaNow.com / April 08, 2013
Six new inductees have joined the Halifax County-South Boston Sports Hall of Fame.
Richard Wilkins, Todd Trickey, Louie H. Seabolt Jr., Lawson Osborne, Ward Burton and the late Everett Taylor joined the 25th annual Hall of Fame class Saturday night at a well-attended ceremony.
Hall president Carlyle Wimbish Jr. presided over the event, introducing a large group of former Hall inductees present for the silver anniversary of the Hall of Fame. Four Hall of Fame scholarship winners, Rufus Jeffress Jr., Tyler Dunn, Gannon Griffin and Chris Baisch, were also recognized.
NFL DRAFTEE JOINS HALL
Richard O. Wilkins, a local businessman, was a seventh-round NFL draft pick of the Denver Broncos. He had been a standout lineman at Mary Bethune and at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore.
Wilkins was also a prep track star, competing in the shot put. He qualified for the state meeting his senior season at Bethune.
Wilkins was presented by his former coach, Harvey Dillard.
Wilkins gave a short speech recognizing his induction, genuinely grateful for the honor. He was happy to recognize his church family, the Jeter Chapel Baptist Church, where he serves as a deacon and Adult Sunday School teacher.
Wilkins is very serious about his Christian faith and made sure to give the glory to God for his Hall induction. Wilkins thanked Dillard and his family members for their support. Wilkins also recognized some of his former Bluestone football teammates.
TECH, COMET STANDOUT NEW HALL MEMBER
Todd Trickey won the Tucker Watkins award for his athletic prowess at Halifax County High School, and later won Collegiate Baseball Freshman all-America and then all-Metro Conference honors at Virginia Tech.
Trickey later became the pitching coach at HCHS during Scooter Dunn’s tenure coaching the Comet baseball team. Trickey also has given his time coaching the Dixie Boys, the Dixie Majors and the Junior American Legion baseball teams in the summer postseason.
Trickey became quite emotional at times during his speech.
He thanked his friends and family members for their support, and made it clear he was blessed in so many ways to help his athletic career.
Trickey also became very close to a baseball mentor, former HCHS varsity head baseball coach Scooter Dunn, who had a positive impact on his career. Trickey also praised his former college baseball coach, legendary Virginia Tech coach Chuck Hartman, who directed his baseball career in college.
Trickey pointed to the influence of a wide range of people, from Halifax youth baseball figure David Wallwork, to Kenneth Day and Frosty Owens, and a long list of Hall of Famers who helped influence his career.
Trickey remembered how former Comet coach John Crittenden consoled the HCHS player after a tough loss.
Addison Marable helped teach Trickey the right way in his athletic career, and Trickey was grateful for his guidance as well.
And that was only a sampling of the people Trickey remembered as he joined the local sports Hall.
Hartman won 1,444 games, sixth all-time in NCAA Division 1. Dunn and Hartman both had key influence on the path of Trickey’s career.
Trickey also praised his family and expressed pride in the path his stepson, Robert Carter, has taken in his own baseball career. Trickey also became emotional remembering his late father.
TAYLOR, SUPPORTER OF YOUTH, REMEMBERED
The late Everett Taylor was a pivotal leader on both the local and state levels of Dixie Youth baseball for more than 25 years. Taylor also was an outstanding youth football coach with the Polar Bears in the South Boston peewee award.
The Taylor family expressed pride and appreciation to the Hall of Fame for the induction.
Taylor, who was presented by Don Williams, was genuinely passionate about helping youngsters, and he tried to teach kids the right way to play the sport. Taylor helped direct countless young people to become successful young men.
Taylor also owned and operated Carroll’s Sporting Goods, which served as a venue to help youngsters, especially with baseball equipment needs.
Mike Taylor, Everett’s son, also read a short piece about the Hall of Famer that was written by former local sports icon and Hall of Famer Hugh Moore after Mr. Taylor’s passing. The piece from Moore stressed the positive thinking that Taylor emphasized every day.
OSBORNE, RECORD BREAKER AND COMET STAR, JOINS HALL
Former versatile Comet athletic standout Lawson Osborne also joined the local Hall. Osborne had a fine career playing youth sports, and he was later a major part of the resurgence of HCHS varsity football under Coleman Starnes, who presented the local standout for induction.
Osborne was also captain of the Comet football team his senior year, and he was an all-district and all-state selection. Osborne held the Comet rushing record for five years.
Osborne later joined the Virginia Air National Guard after a brief stint at Virginia Tech.
Osborne was presented for induction by Hall of Fame coach Coleman Starnes, who revitalized the football program here after the 1966 season. Osborn was ready to give up football, but Starnes intervened and helped the burly Comet athlete later set new football records.
Osborne also diligently remembered his former Comet football teammates for their support.
SEABOLT JOINS HIS DAD IN THE HALL
Louie Seabolt joined his dad, Louie Seabolt, in the local Hall. Louie learned some valuable lessons from his father, including always doing a job right and working to finish any task one had started.
Louie Seabolt was grateful for his family support, as Seabolt enjoyed a versatile career in sports that ranged from success in the local sports scene. Seabolt later went on to the University of Virginia, where he was a starter his final two years. Seabolt played second and third base.
Seabolt had positive influence from a number of figures here, including a local teacher, the late Mary McLaughlin, who helped influence his decision to go to school at Virginia.
Seabolt also paid particular homage to the 1960 HCHS senior class, which included a number of outstanding athletes who went on to successful lives.
Seabolt was a reserve guard on the 1960 HCHS varsity basketball team that came close to winning the state title. That HCHS squad included hoops standouts Chip Conner, Bill Morningstar, Bobby Wilborn, and Wayne Lloyd.
Seabolt is also remembered here for an outstanding career in youth baseball, including his key role in the remarkable underdog run in 1955 by the local Virginia Little League baseball champions. Seabolt pitched the first game against Waynesboro in that tournament run, and the final championship game against Hampton, winning that 3-0.
Seabolt praised a number of local figures in helping to shape his athletic career. He was presented by his brother, Charles F. Seabolt.
BURTON NEW HALL OF FAMER
Ward Burton had a monumental night. First, Burton, a former NASCAR Sprint Cup star and the 2002 Daytona 500 winner, got to watch his son, Jeb, put on a superb racing effort in the NASCAR Truck Series with a third place finish in Saturday’s Kroger 250 at historic Martinsville Speedway.
Burton was presented by his dad, Hall of Famer Johnny Burton, who recalled how the NASCAR driver did a lot in the sport of racing without the benefit of multi-car teams or high-dollar financial backing for many of his NASCAR rivals.
Burton has since become a major backer of conservation causes, and his legacy in that field has already been very important.
Burton thanked his family, including his mom and dad for the sacrifices they made to bolster his career.
The former NASCAR Sprint Cup regular also made it clear how much he appreciated the support of the community and the many volunteers who helped launch his racing career. Burton also saluted former sponsor Randy Pritchard for his valuable support of his racing career.
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