Saturday, June 1, 2013

Vol. 3 No. 33 A Labor of Love

2009 Rancho Alamitos Track Yearbook

I recently received  copies of two track and field annual publications from a high school in California , Rancho Alamitos coached by Darryl Taylor who has been coaching at Rancho Alamitos  1965-66 school year until his retirement in 2004 and then for another seven years until 2011.  I can truly say that this annual book that Darryl puts together for his kids is a unique work that few high school or college athletes will ever have to remember their days on their team.  The humble beginning  is on mimeograph paper a modest 29 pages and two pages of photos on card stock.  In the 2009 issue,  Darryl goes into great detail about every meet and every race his kids have run for the whole year.  Their relay splits, times and progression throughout the season are all detailed. He did similar work in the 1966  early issue as well, but there wasn't as much data to process early in his coaching career.   He covers the 800, 1600,  3200 for both the boys and girls and 880, mile and 2 miles, back when those distances mattered..  Now in 2009 there are-all time lists at three levels Gold, Silver, and Bronze that runners can strive to move up to.   It is a tremendous motivational tool.   There are color photos of almost every runner in every race they ran for the year.  Darryl has done this every year for every student he has coached.  It is an incredible life's work and a monument to his devotion to his athletes and to his sport.   He also breaks performances down in to all time best for each class year Freshmen, Soph's etc.  Those lists are 20 deep. He lists great same day Middle Distance Doubles  30 deep.   It just goes on and on.  The 2009 issue is  approximately 175 pages long.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        
2009 New Hall of Fame Members
Not only is this a motivational tool and a great memory for every kid who ever wore a Rancho Alamitos uniform, but someday when these children are forty years old and putting on weight, it may inspire them to renew the efforts they once made for the sport and get themselves back on the solid path of fitness and good health.  It will surely affect some of them all their lives.

Tom Baird Winning  the 1967
Garden Grove City League Mile Finals in 4:22.1
1967 Record Setters  (UL) Ted Bechtel, (UR) Rusty Nelson
(LL) Sid Williams , (LR) Tom Baird
The one thing I find missing in the issue I have on my desk is a picture of Darryl Taylor or a single mention of his name anywhere in this book.  This says everything about the humbleness of the man.  Our hats at the Once Upon a Time in the Vest  boardroom go off to Darryl and are thrown high in the air with accompanying Huzzahs and Hip Hip Hoorays.  ed. 

We will not be too shy to put Darryl's picture in here running for Long Beach State against John Bork and a more recent picture of Darryl and his wife.  All the best to you, Darryl.  

Several comments have come in related to this post.  We've listed them below.

From John Bork

"I'd like to communicate with Darryl Taylor. "

                                                                    From Richard Trace
"Phenomenal work!"

From Mike Solomon

"Rancho Alamitos High!!! only a few miles from my high school...we competed against them even.All of those names go back to the Spanish and Mexican haciendas in California.One of their more famous alums was Gary Hall..olympic swimmer years ago.

A good friend of mine played football at Rancho Alamitos...went on to Stanford on a football scholarship and played a long time in the NFL for the Patriots....Randy Vataha( wide receiver) a sports agent in the Boston area.  He married a gal from my high school.

Keep up the good work....I forwarded the Memorial Day story to Billy Mills.
will be in Tahoe in a few days for this seven man relay around the lake...... each guy runs about 10 miles...and one of our runners was also a wide receiver at Stanford and much better shape than yours truly."

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