North Reading’s Stone Honored By Nationwide Wrestling Corridor Of Fame
For over forty years now, celebrated Lynnfield educator and coach Craig Stone hammered into the minds of numerous scholar-athletes that actual acronym for the phrase group.
And to the North Studying resident, the cornerstone of his teaching philosophy is greater than a catch phrase to seize the eye of adolescent minds. It’s a universal truth.
So when a semi-retired Stone stepped into Gillette Stadium late last April as the recipient of the supreme honor, a Lifetime Service to Wrestling Award from his friends on the Mass. Chapter of the Nationwide Wrestling Corridor of Fame (NWHOF), the humbled coach for Lynnfield and North Reading’s Black and Gold co-op squad acknowledged these whose sweat and grit brought him to the center stage.
“I’ve coached over 250 athletes who have graduated from both colleges. They’ve built the program. They’re the stars and essentially the most influential a part of all of this. That’s why I keep at it,” mentioned Stone, who in June of 2016, ended his forty four-12 months profession as a Lynnfield physical schooling instructor.
“To be recognized by your peers and be in the company of past inductees, you’re honored and humbled at the identical time. I had staff members there again from 1976 and the entire group I coached final yr. It was a real honor,” he added.
Through the current awards ceremony at Gillette Stadium, where New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft made a shock appearance, Stone and four different coach inductees had been acknowledged by the NWHOF and Museum in Stillwater, Oklahoma with an official commemorative plaque and a Nationwide Corridor of Fame jacket. Their names will even be inscribed with the other past inductees on the Nationwide Wall of Honor at the Oklahoma museum.
Previous to convincing both communities to ascertain the joint wresting program again in 2005, the Rhode Island native served as Lynnfield’s wrestling coach from its inception as a varsity highschool program again in 1976.
Simply 4 years earlier than beginning his teaching career, after completing his master’s degree at the University of Oregon, Stone had gotten a tip from an educational advisor again at Springfield School a couple of job alternative in a quaint North Shore neighborhood.
Ironically, had Stone not attended Springfield School for his undergraduate research, not solely would he have possible missed his first and solely job interview in the course of the fall of 1972, however he simply could have by no means hit a wrestling mat and been captivated by the sport.
“I thought I used to be a basketball participant,” joked Stone about his highschool expertise, when he was inspired to affix the wrestling group, however as a substitute chased other stone island grey jumper pursuits as a 3-sport athlete. “[After i went to Springfield School] I took the wrestling talent [course] and was intrigued by it.”
“Next factor I knew, the freshman wrestling coach had me. I fell in love with it and hung onto it for the subsequent 4 years. It’s a bodily and mentally exhausting sport, however actually gratifying. I just needed to cross it on,” he recalled. “[My advisor years later instructed me in regards to the Lynnfield opening]. So I’ve had one job interview and one job my total life. Every thing simply fell into place.”
Although retired as an educator, a call in-half motivated by his need to share “daycare” duties for his two grandchildren, the married father-of-two remains to be energized by his teaching work. So after he helps increase the second technology of youth in his personal household, he steps out of his North Studying dwelling to teach a brand new era of athletes in Lynnfield.
“For most individuals on the lookout for early retirement, they hope to get 36 years [in their careers]. I went so much longer than that, because I like the children,” he mentioned. “Being a trainer, I had rather a lot of those athletes from elementary faculty on. So I’ve seen them develop up and had the chance to show and coach their mothers and fathers as nicely.”
“My grandchildren are three and nearly two. I mentioned to myself, ‘I’m not going to get to spend time with them except I do it now.’ So my spouse and that i joined forces to do daycare. Once i go away [to go coach], I say, ‘Papa’s received to go to tiny work now,’” joked Stone.
Since he started instructing pupil-athletes in Lynnfield again in 1975 – when a handful of teens petitioned directors to transition wrestling from a membership group to a varsity sport – Stone, additionally the women varsity tennis coach for the Pioneers, has turn into recognized one of many state’s greatest.
Simply this previous spring, Stone, whose ladies tennis squad captured a Division three North Title, secured his 1,one centesimal combined victory as a coach. It’s a feat that has solely been completed by three within the state.
As head of Lynnfield’s wrestling staff since its inception as a varsity sport in 1976, the coach has amassed an general file of 528-323. Together with his stint as coach of the Lynnfield/North Reading co-op that was based in 2005, a partnership the educator pushed for after seeing participation charges drop sharply, his groups have earned three Division three North Titles, 4 Cape Ann League Championships, and one two-yr run starting in 2012 throughout which the Black and Gold went undefeated.
The lifelong educator’s friends have additionally honored him with particular recognitions all through his profession, throughout which he has on seven events been named Cape Ann League’s Coach of the Yr. In 1998, he was inducted into the Mass. Wrestling Coaches Affiliation Corridor of Fame, a prelude to his Lifetime Service to Wrestling Award this yr, which comes along with his induction into the Nationwide Wrestling Coaches Affiliation Corridor of Fame.
Additionally this previous spring, members of Lynnfield’s Board of Selectmen, joined by State Senator Thomas Magee (D-Lynn), showered reward upon the neighborhood mentor, who had personally taught a number of of the native officials gathered at City Corridor.
“It’s very uncommon that you’ve somebody who’s actually a dwelling legend in your city,” mentioned Selectmen Chair Phillip Crawford, whereas studying a proclamation in Stone’s honor. “Craig Stone…has received the admiration of scholars and athletes and his friends, all whereas instilling the values of teamwork and dedication, and persistence.”
“You’ve made all these private relationships with pupil-athletes. You’ve taught them about grit and perseverance and the significance of winning…but additionally concerning the significance of shedding and the right way to stand up yet one more time after being knocked down,” later remarked Lynnfield Superintendent of Faculties Jane Tremblay. “Those classes are so important…The solely motive they’ve realized them is as a result of you’ve been the leader on the mat instilling [these values].”
Earlier this week, the Lynnfield women tennis workforce ended a state championship run by shedding in semifinal tournament play to powerhouse Martha’s Vineyard. Over the previous 4 years, the Pioneers have loved a seventy nine-5 file, throughout which they captured the state championship in 2014, 4 sectional championships, and several other Cape Ann League titles.
Coach of the girls’ squad since 1981, Stone as of his 1,one hundred victory final spring, had compiled a powerful 572-eighty five report. Alongside the way in which, the Pioneers have received 5 state championships, 14 sectional championships, and 19 Cape Ann League titles.
“They’re both workforce sports activities with a person emphasis,” stated Stone, when requested about his success in two athletic packages that require such totally different talent units. Stone Island product “Together, every achieves extra. I continually attempt to stress that with each sports.