June 23, 2017

Darnell Hillman

Former Indiana Pacers Player Darnell Hillman chats with participants of the Crispus Attucks Benefit Golf Outing. The fundraiser for the Crispus Attucks Athletics Department will be held July 8 and Coffin Golf Club in Indianapolis.     It’s been
60 years since some of the members of the Crispus Attucks Alumni Lettermen’s Club have graduated from the
historic Crispus Attucks High School (now Crispus Attucks Medical Magnet High
School). But they continue to give their time and money to honor the teachers
and coaches who impacted their lives, and to ensure that current and future
Attucks students have what they need to succeed.

The
work that these former high school student-athletes do for their alma mater
will be on full display during the Second Annual Crispus Attucks Benefit Golf Outing on July 8 at Coffin Golf Club. The event is just one of the
ways the club raises money to support athletic programs at Crispus Attucks.

“Being
a public school, we can’t use government money for extracurriculars, so
everything we spend comes from ticket sales, concessions and
donations/fundraisers,” said Crispus Attucks Athletic Director Josh Varno. “With
that being said, without the Lettermen Club’s tireless dedication to our
programs, we would struggle to add the pieces our department needs to give our
student-athletes the experience they deserve.”

Since its
founding in 2007, the club’s dedication to Attucks has not gone unnoticed. For
the last four years, the Lettermen have raised and donated approximately $7,500
for the school’s athletic department. In 2016, the money received was used to
revamp the school’s athletic website, provide a wagon to transport equipment,
and install a new weight room rack and platform.

With this year’s golf outing, Varno hopes to purchase a video scoreboard
and LED scorer’s table; lightweight wrestling mats; blocking sleds; and new
uniforms for softball, volleyball and soccer.

The motivation
of the Lettermen’s Club to help its alma mater comes from what members said
they endured during their own experiences at Attucks. According to the club’s
current president, Chuck Knox (Class of 1967), they had to deal with “old, used
and sometimes outdated equipment, with many of us on the football team
purchasing our own football shoes because those supplied by the school were
pretty old and beat up.”

The
club’s goal has always been to rewrite that story and help provide future
generations at Crispus Attucks with the equipment to help make for a better
athletic experience.

Along
with providing assistance to the school’s athletics department, members are
also steadfast in honoring the coaches and teachers who had a positive
influence on them when they were in school. From the club’s inception by late
founder Herman Poindexter, it didn’t take long before a true tradition took
root. Each June since 2008, the Lettermen have honored nine teachers during a
special ceremony, awarding them with an individual plaque that is later donated
to the IPS Crispus Attucks Museum. This year, the club honored Ray Crowe and Mary
Oglesby.

Registration
for the Second Annual Crispus Attucks Benefit Golf Outing begins at 7 a.m.,
followed by the shotgun start at 8 a.m. The event is open to the public. Cost
is $85 for an individual golfer and $340 for a foursome. To register, visit www.crispusattucksalumnilettermen.weebly.com.