By Sheri Duff
It may have taken 25 years for the 1984 and 1985 Champlain Valley Union (CVU) boys’ state championship cross country running teams to plan a bona fide reunion but it was worth the wait. On Saturday, July 28, the runners and their families, plus former and current coaches, gathered in Shelburne to reminisce and to honor Coach Don Moore.
The aforementioned get-together and scholarship would never have taken place if not for teammates Peter Murray and Chris Williams, who reconnected thanks to business in the Midwest. Williams explained the unusual circumstances, “Peter was overseeing the construction of a plant just blocks from where I live in Iowa.
Once we got together we came up with the idea,” he said. Back in Vermont, Murray enlisted the help of teammate Eric Krawitt who agreed to spearhead the entire effort.
“Don Moore was an iconic coach and teacher,” Krawitt explained. “He meant a lot to us and to CVU. We wanted to honor him and felt like a cross country scholarship would be a perfect way to do just that. The reunion gave us an opportunity to honor him personally.”
And they did. Nearly all the members of both championship varsity teams attended the festivities that included a fun run at CVU and a Saturday evening barbecue. It was quite a tribute for the retired coach and earth science teacher of 28 years who was originally recruited to teach at the union high school by then Chair of the School Board, Barbara Snelling.
“I was teaching in Woodstock,” Coach Moore recalled. “And her husband, who was running for governor at the time, attended a rally at the school. She mentioned that CVU had an opening for a science teacher and asked me to consider it. Although I had other interviews, I accepted the position in 1965, a year after CVU opened.”
A longtime Shelburne resident, Coach Moore retired in 1993 and laments that he has kept himself so busy he wondered how he ever had time to teach. “I do volunteer work. I help with lunch at the Charlotte Senior Center. And my 13 grandkids keep me very busy,” he commented.
With an endowment made possible by the championship cross country teams, faculty, alumni, and friends of Coach Moore, the Coach Moore Scholarship is now a reality. The annual scholarship of $2,500 to be awarded annually to a cross country runner will begin with graduation 2013.
“I can’t find the words to express how I feel,” Coach Moore offered. “I’m blown away. This scholarship means a lot to me. Thank you all, it does my heart good,” he added in his typical way. “This is pretty special.”