EHC Mourns the Loss of Bob Johnson
Veteran Coach, Administrator Passes After Long Battle with Cancer
EMORY, Va. --- Emory & Henry College is
mourning the death of Bob Johnson, whose 27 years of coaching men's
basketball at the school left a deep, positive imprint on hundreds
of athletes and on a college community.
"This is a profoundly sad day for this tight-knit college community," said E&H President Rosalind Reichard. "The people of Emory & Henry loved Bob dearly, and we will miss greatly his strength, his passion and the love he had for all of us."
Johnson died Saturday morning after a long battle with kidney cancer. His family is planning a memorial service to be held in the King Athletic Center Saturday, Aug. 29.
In his 27 years of coaching at Emory & Henry, Johnson built a national reputation, helped by five teams in the NCAA playoffs, including two in the Sweet 16. He was honored three times as Old Dominion Athletic Coach of the Year and three times as NCAA South Region Coach of the Year.
His athletes have included numerous All-American, ODAC players of the year, All-Conference players and one National Player of the Year.
Before retiring from coaching in 2007, Johnson gained national attention for his use of a fast-paced run-and-gun offense that helped his team to winning seasons and some big upsets over nationally ranked teams. In 2007, he was awarded the Division III Service Award by the National Association of Basketball Coaches.
After his retirement from coaching, Johnson continued to work full-time as Emory & Henry's athletic director. In that capacity, he provided valuable guidance to the E&H coaching staff and worked to raise money for the construction of a stadium that honors the late Fred Selfe, Johnson's best friend and another former E&H athletic director.
A veteran of the Vietnam War, Johnson has been praised by his athletes for his leadership and his commitment. "Those of us who played for Coach will agree that he helped to shape us as people first," said Paul Russo, Emory & Henry's current head men's basketball coach who played for Johnson as a student. "I believe he has made me a better coach because he has made me a better person."
This release is courtesy of Emory & Henry College.