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Coach Cooper presented with plaque in memory of Jerry Ward

Lisa Hartman, the daughter of the late Jerry Ward who was a star on the Blountstown High School Fighting Tiger team back in 1953, came to town Friday to present a plaque in honor of legendary BHS Coach Ted Cooper in memory of her father. Shown at the presentation are (seated from left) Richard Leath, who served as co-captain of the team in 1955 and was named MVP that year; Donnell Whitfield, named MVP in 1956; Charles Ray Howell, the MVP for the 1954 season, R.L. Alford, who scored four touchdowns in a game against Florida High during the 1953 season; Doug Peacock, who served as co-captain in 1955 and took Jerry Ward’s spot the previous year after Ward graduated; (standing) BHS Assistant Principal Debbie Williams, Jim Kearce who led the state in punting during the 1953 season, Coach Ted Cooper, BHS Principal Ronnie Hand, and Lisa Hartman, Jerry Ward’s daughter. “He is one of the finest players in the history of Blountstown High School football,” Kearce said of Ward, adding, “As Bear Bryant once said about Leroy Jordan, if he stayed in bounds, Jerry would get him.” When Coach Cooper came to BHS in 1953, he led the Tigers to their first championship title when they won the Apalachicola Valley Conference. All of the guys shown above played on that team.

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