RHHS Class of ‘82 pays tribute

Published 10:33 am Friday, June 9, 2017

Reunion turns into event honoring Coach Large with donation of bench

On Saturday, June 3, the Rock Hill Senior High students from the class of 1982 conducted the 35th anniversary of their graduation.

Participants chose Rock Hill Middle School for the venue, since this was their former high school building. A myriad of graduates, guests, and dignitaries were present to honor these members, as well as to pay tribute to the late Carl Large, who was a beloved educator, basketball coach, and athletic director at Rock Hill.

Before the formation of the Rock Hill Local School District in 1949, Large was a star basketball athlete for Kitts Hill High School, scoring a career total of 1,579 points. During those three years of play, he received many honors: All-County for three seasons, Associated Press Second Team All-Ohio, and First Team his last year of high school. After offers to attend other universities, he elected to enroll at Rio Grande, where he excelled in basketball. On Dec. 10, 1977, Large was inducted to the Rio Grande Athletic Hall of Fame.

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Before beginning a career as a teacher and coach, he served his country during the Korean War.

In 1959, he became a teacher and a junior varsity basketball coach at Tipp City. Afterwards, he acquired the boys’ head basketball coaching position at Clinton-Massie High School, while compiling an overall record of 46-30 with the Falcons.

He moved back to Lawrence County in order to teach and coach at Rock Hill.
As a member of the Rock Hill staff, he worked in such capacities as an educator, coach, and athletic director.  Large was the boys’ head basketball coach during part of the 1970s and the latter 1980s.  The Redmen were 9-3 during his first season as head coach. He led the team to a 13-5 record the next year.

Afterwards, he took over as the head coach of the girls’ basketball program, with an overall record of 39-14.

In 1987, he once again assumed the role as boys’ head basketball coach and finished with a 14-8 record his final season. The Redmen were 25-37 overall during his second tenure as head coach.

After retirement, Large served as a member of the Rock Hill Board of Education. He passed away in 2006 at the age of 74.

As a token of gratitude during its 35th year class reunion, the Rock Hill Class of 1982 dedicated a memorial bench in honor of Coach Large to Rock Hill Middle School.

Large’s daughter, Molly Poling, a graduate of the class, was astonished when the cover was removed from the bench during the presentation, revealing the words, “In Memory of Coach Carl Large Dedicated by the Class of 1982.”

Poling originally thought this to be a typical class reunion, but after the bench was revealed, displaying her father’s name, she was moved.

“It is an honor to be present during such a prestigious event. This bench is a memorial for Carl and will be proudly displayed for our school, community, and guests to see,”said Rock Hill Middle School Principal Jason Owens. “The stories being told during the reunion, two 1982 championship basketball trophies on display, yearbooks and scrapbooks being viewed, and posters hanging in our gymnasium from that era brought a feeling of sentiment,” said Owens.