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Willard Bailey to keynote VIAHA Hall of Fame banquet

Fred Jeter | 6/17/2016, 2:23 p.m.
Former Virginia Union University football Coach Willard Bailey will be the keynote speaker for the Virginia Interscholastic Association Heritage Association’s ...
Mr. Balley

Former Virginia Union University football Coach Willard Bailey will be the keynote speaker for the Virginia Interscholastic Association Heritage Association’s inaugural Hall of Fame Banquet.

The banquet will be 5 p.m. Monday, June 20, at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel, 990 Hilton Heights Roads, in Charlottesville.

The 2016 Hall of Fame class includes 11 athletes, 10 coaches, six contributors to student athletics and one special recognition.

Local inductees into the VIAHA Hall of Fame will include Donald L. “Cisco” Ross Jr., a former basketball star at Richmond’s Armstrong High School, and George Lancaster, basketball coach at Highland Springs High School in Henrico and a former sports standout at West End High School in Mecklenburg.

Former Maggie L. Walker High School coaches Arthur “Stretch” Gardner and Fredrick T. “Cannonball” Cooper and former Armstrong High School Coach Maxie Robinson Sr. will be inducted posthumously.

Also to be inducted are the late Jesse H. Jefferson Jr., a baseball standout at the former Carver High School in Chesterfield County who went on to play for the Baltimore Orioles, Chicago White Sox, Toronto Blue Jays, Pittsburgh Pirates and California Angels; and the late George Peterson Jr., former principal of Richmond’s Armstrong High School.

Special recognition will go to the Armstrong-Walker Football Classic, a 40-year Thanksgiving weekend football game between Richmond’s Armstrong and Maggie L. Walker high schools that became a cultural phenomenon.

VIA was the governing body from 1954 to 1970 for Virginia’s public schools for black students during segregation.

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