Anyone who’s spent any time at a sporting event at Madison-Plains High School in the last 30 years or so likely had an interaction with Don Beatty.
The longtime Golden Eagles athletics supporter has coached multiple sports, volunteered his time in multiple different ways and was a true ambassador for the Madison-Plains High School athletic community.
His life however came to an end sometime over the weekend when he was found unresponsive by his family Monday morning. His death has hit the Madison-Plains High School athletic department pretty hard.
“He was about as classy a guy as you’re every going to find,” Madison-Plains High School director of athletics Matt Mason said. “All we’re being told right now is that he was found dead (Monday) morning at his home. We really don’t know much more than that.”
Mason said Beatty, who always seemed to be in and around the school, was just in the school office on Friday.
Whether it was coaching, helping with concessions, socializing with Eagles fans or helping direct guests around to the school around, Beatty tried his best to help out wherever he was needed.
“Don didn’t miss an athletic event,” Mason said. “He supported all of our teams and our athletes. He developed relationships with student athletes for years.
“He was one of those guys I would reach out to if I needed something, and he was always there to say yes. He coached football and softball and was wherever we needed him and would help wherever he could. You can’t replace a guy like Don. There is a very small group of people like that out there. He was humble and helpful and would do anything for this school and community. You have to celebrate everything he did for us.”
Saying good-bye to a significant member of the school’s athletic community won’t be easy.
“It’s a sad day, you just can’t replace a guy like that.”
Reach Chris Miles at 740-852-1616, ext. 1618 or via Twitter @MadPressSports.