Nine familiar names from a variety of sports and a number of generations were honored over the weekend, which brings up this question: Who are the members of the Chattahoochee Valley Sports Hall of Fame?
The first class of five was inducted in 1996. That group was composed of Olympic sprinter Harvey Glance, sports medicine pioneer Dr. Jack Hughston, 1987 Masters champion Larry Mize, future MLB Hall of Famer Frank Thomas, along with Nate Odomes — a veteran of four Super Bowl games.
The late Charlie Morrow, owner of the Columbus Red Stixx and founder of the Columbus Cottonmouths, originated the hall of fame in 1996 and he soon asked businessman Jim White to get involved. White is the longtime chairman.
The current selection committee is composed of: Greg Camp; Gen. Ben Register; Joe Bross, Dr. Champ Baker Jr.; Wallace Davis; Dorenda Weaver; Dr. Mike Helms; Jay Sparks; Richard Saunders; Bobby Howard; Brad Arnold; Chuck Hecht; Robert Anderson; James Patrick; Debbie Ball; and Sam Warren.
To date, there are 121 well-known athletes and contributors from Columbus and Phenix City in the local hall of fame and that growing list of names is impressive. It is also an interesting group of personalities, as this unofficial breakdown indicates:
Practicing Medicine: Dr. Jack Hughston (1996); Dr. Champ Baker (2011).
From the NFL: Otis Sistrunk (2000); Ernie Greene (1997); Woodrow Lowe (1998); Nate Odomes (1996) Moe Williams (2018), Lewis Colbert (2013), Mack Strong (2009); Charlie Johnson (2008); Billy Jackson (2009); Jeremiah Castille (2005); Brentson Buckner (2007); Chuck Hurston (2006); DJ Jones (2004); David Ray (2003); Bob Davis (1998).
And from Canadian Football League: Eddie Lowe (2015)
Olympians: Harvey Glance (1996); Lones Wigger Jr. (1997).
NBA Alumni: Claude English (2011), Joe C. Meriwether (2004), Sam Mitchell (2002).
From the MLB Dugout: Frank Thomas (1996); Spec Richardson (1998); Lamar “Skeeter” Newsome (1999); Elmer Riddle (1999); Glenn Davis (2001); Chase Riddle (2004); Tim Hudson (2010).
Here Comes the Judge: Aaron Cohn (2007)
First Woman: Mary Lynne Cumiskey (2003).
Making the Cut: Larry Mize PGA (2006); Hugh Royer Jr. PGA (2002); Angelea Jerman Ormsby LPGA (2018); Jim Mackay caddy (2014).
Mr. Mayor: B.F. Register of Columbus (1997); Bob Davis of Chattanooga (1998).
Siblings: Billy Key (1999) Jack Key Jr. (2000); Woodrow Lowe (1998) Eddie Lowe (2015); Tim Walton (2016); Sue Walton Caldwell (2017).
From the Pressbox: Cecil Darby (1997); Elwood Moyer (2000); Cliff Rutledge (2014); Phil Scoggins (2017); Scott Miller (2018).
Fathers and Sons: O.L. Gilstrap (2012); Speedy Gilstrap (2016); Dan Kirkland Jr. (2010); Dan Kirkland (2018).
Husband and Wife: James “Bubba” Ball (1998) and Debbie Ball (2005).
Best Nickname: Jerome “Boom Boom” Bechard (2012).
You’re in the Army Now: Maj. Gen. Ken Leuer (2005); Col. Greg Camp (2010).
Below is a year-by-year list of inductees:
Dr. Jack Hughston
G. Gunby Jordan
Lones Wigger Jr.
James “Bubba” Ball
Robert T. “Bob” Davis
Harold “Spec” Richardson
William Hugh Zimmerman
James W. “Billy” Key
Charles R. Morrow
Frank M. “Sonny” Clements
William D. “Bill” Godwin
Jack B. Key Jr.
Charles M. “Chuck” Evert
Alvin “Pig” Davis
Don Leebern Jr.
R.G. Jones Jr.
George McCluskey Jr.
Hugh Royer Jr.
Mary Lynne Cumiskey
Joe C. Meriwether
Daryll “DJ” Jones
James B. Redd
Charles “Chuck” Hurston
Judge Aaron Cohn
Vanessa Graham Jenkins
E.L. “Moose Godwin
James H. Patrick
George C. Woodruff
Dan Kirkland Jr.
Dr. Champ Baker Jr.
Joe Lee Dunn