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Muscogee Sports

Who’s in the local sports hall of fame?

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:


Harvey Glance

Dr. Jack Hughston

Larry Mize

Nate Odomes

Frank Thomas


Cecil Darby

Ernest Green

G. Gunby Jordan

B.F. Register

Lones Wigger Jr.

Brookstone’s Mary Lynne Cumiskey was a standout tennis player and currently is coach at her alma mater. In 2003 she became the first woman inducted into the Chattahoochee Valley Sports Hall of Fame.


James “Bubba” Ball

Robert T. “Bob” Davis

Woodrow Lowe

Harold “Spec” Richardson

William Hugh Zimmerman


James W. “Billy” Key

Charles R. Morrow

Lamar Newsome

Elmer Riddle

Odis Spencer


Frank M. “Sonny” Clements

William D. “Bill” Godwin

Jack B. Key Jr.

Elwood Moyer

Otis Sistrunk


Charles M. “Chuck” Evert

Alvin “Pig” Davis

Glenn Davis

Fred Haskins

Don Leebern Jr.


Tommy Garrett

R.G. Jones Jr.

George McCluskey Jr.

Sam Mitchell

Hugh Royer Jr.

Sam Mitchell was a star at Columbus High and Mercer University and worked hard to earn a spot in professional basketball. After 13 years in the NBA, he went into coaching and was named Coach of the Year in 2007. He’s currently a broadcaster on the NBA Network.


Mary Lynne Cumiskey

Herbert Greene

Bill Ploeger

David Ray

Wayne Trawick


Joe C. Meriwether

Wallace Davis

Chase Riddle

Jimmy Lee

Daryll “DJ” Jones


Debbie Ball

Jeremiah Castille

Bobby Howard

Ken Leuer

James B. Redd


Billy Jackson

Sam Roberts

Charles “Chuck” Hurston

Ed Adams

TC Britton

Tim Hudson recently joined the Atlanta Braves Hall of Fame but he has been a member of the local hall since 2010.


Terry Scott

Judge Aaron Cohn

Vanessa Graham Jenkins

Doug Key

Brentson Buckner


B.T. Fowlkes

E.L. “Moose Godwin

James H. Patrick

Charlie Johnson

George Hamer

George C. Woodruff


Larry Gaither

Bill Jordan

Leroy Propst

Mack Strong

Jim White


Greg Camp

Ben Hardaway

Tim Hudson

Dan Kirkland Jr.

Nathan Rustin


Dr. Champ Baker Jr.

Wendell Barr

Claude English

Joe Harrell

Ron Yarbrough

As a rough and tumble player on the ice and as head coach of the Cottonmouths, Jerome Bechard became the face of hockey in Columbus


Jerome Bechard

Max Wilkes

Thermus Butler

Jeff Weekley

O.L. Gilstrap

Charles Wright


Willie Bowman

Lewis Colbert

Joe Lee Dunn

Charles Ragsdale

Eugene White


BR Johnson

Jim Mackay

Cliff Rutledge

Mark Upshaw

Jeremy Williams


John Flournoy

Dennis Holmberg

Eddie Lowe

Carter Mize

Wright Waddell


Jim Blanchard

Pam Carter

Cecil Cheves

Speedy Gilstrap

Tim Walton


Charles Flowers turned Shaw High School into statewide contenders in football and baseball.



Sue Walton Caldwell

Charles Flowers

Leo T. Harrison Jr.

Phil Scoggins

Mike Stephens


Paul B. “Pop” Austin

Dan A. Kirkland

James T. Skipworth

Rudy Allen

Sam McQuagg

Scott Miller

Angela Jerman Ormsby

Karen Hill Waters

Maurice “Mo” Williams

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