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Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Letter to the Editor 
web posted December 1, 2005

Dear Editor:

I appreciate very much you allowing me this forum to respond to some remarks made against me in recent weeks. First of all, I wish to take this opportunity to congradulate the STHS Football team. What you have accomplished this year has made all of us very proud of you.

As most of you know, I have been involved with high school athletics, arena football, sports in some form or another since 1982. I have had the pleasure of working with some of the finest coaches in the country. I graduated from STHS in 1985 and have enjoyed working with young people my entire life doing whatever I could do to help them become fine citizens, teachers, and to serve in many leadership postitions in this county and nationwide.

I have spent countless hours for no pay, no offer of pay and with little or no appreciation doing this. It has been bought to my attention by several of you through this paper, in person to person contact, that you feel that I have a ax to grind against the current administration, coaching staff,concerning some incidents that were allowed to occur during my service and the service of others to the football program. While I do not agree with our mistreatment I do not have any ill feelings toward anyone.

Someone also stated that I need to grow up, well as head of sales for Western North Carolina for a wholesale hunting & fishing company and VP of a internet company here in South Carolina that specializes in design and production of public safety items that is grown up as you can be.
It has been said, time and time although untrue that the support staff were let go by Coach Sawyer. For the record, we were not fired, let go, asked to leave or any of the above. We choose to leave under our own free will when Coach Sawyer was premoted to head coach. We choose to do this because of our age, jobs, and because we were tired of the direction that the football program was headed.

The football seasons in the past were very stressful and very hard to take. Our last season 2003 was esspecially hard to take the profanity, lack of respect, and the Myrtle Beach playoff game was enough to make you sick. We were asked by Coach Woolsey, Coach Smith, Coach Tripplett to perform various services for them during their time of service at Strom Thurmond High because no students within the district had any interest in the job. In my oppion we performed well during our many years of service to Strom Thurmond High.

They were of course many other reasons such as the athletic director at the time who formed an oppion about something without looking at the facts with one of my friends but, he will have to live with his decision.

This letter could go on but, I remember many times paying for supplies out of my own pocket, taking up money within the community to purchase uniform shirts for us because the athletic department didnt think that we were important enough to provide uniforms for. We even had to pay for our own gasoline, tickets, at some ball games and were rarely offered a hot meal on game night but we loved the kids and what we did and probably would do it again if the opportunity came.

In wrapping up this letter let me mention my desire to serve in a postition of the Edgefield County School Board. I choose to run and was asked to run by people in this county who wanted to see change. I love this county the people are the best. I want to see this county with good schools, quality teachers, decent property taxes, jobs, industry.
I may never get elected but, Im a hero for running it takes alot of courage to do it. I hope the people in this county will take a good long hard look at me and realize that I mean what I say and say what I mean.

In closing I wish the Rebels my best I will not be able to attend the game but my heart and soul will be in Columbia.

Tony Edwards
Trenton SC

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