Donation to HOF was befitting of Linden

Published 10:33 pm Tuesday, February 17, 2009

A gesture by Linden High principal Timothy Thurman last week was great on multiple levels. His decision to donate championship trophies to the newly-created Marengo County Sports Hall of Fame showed Linden High’s support of the venture.

The awards, earned by the school’s football program during the era of Walter “Pistol” Henders, will find their new home at the Hall.

Truth be told, the Hall of Fame will provide a much more suitable home to the awards than would Linden High School.

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The trophies were won by the Red Devils, which have not competed in Linden for decades. LHS is now home to the Patriots.

The football program in its modern form is vastly different from its state the last time the Red Devils left the field. Over time, the memorabilia has remained as reminders of all the Red Devils’ accomplishments.

However, at the same time, their value to the Patriots is limited. The program has virtually no ties remaining to the bygone era of Henders’ Red Devils.

As such, the Patriots deserved to be measured on their own merits rather than against the accomplishments of those who have preceded them.

Those old trophies are ripe with history and tradition and they will be a welcome addition to the Hall – who is now trying to establish its own history and its own tradition.

Thurman’s contributions to the Hall allow the people of Marengo County to appreciate the successes Henders and the Red Devils for decades to come.

But Thurman’s decision also frees up some space in the trophy case for the Linden Patriots to write their own legacy and take their shot at earning eventual recognition in the Marengo County Sports Hall of Fame.