Baldwinsville Friday afternoon, Sept. 7, approximately 100 people gathered at the Pelcher-Arcaro Stadium concession facility on the Baldwinsville Central School District’s main campus on East Oneida Street to hear fond stories about former varsity football coach Bill Neufang.
As a teacher in the district, a wrestling coach for 17 years and football coach for 29 years, Neufang impacted many young lives in the classroom, on the mats and on the field. He was the first Baldwinsville varsity football coach to lead a team to playoff standings at the Carrier Dome and was known as the voice of the state wrestling championship, having been the announcer for the competition for more than 25 years.
Neufang was a teacher in the district for 31 years and retired in 1987. He passed away in June 2011 at the age of 81.
According to Superintendent Jeanne Dangle, as plans were being made for the new concession facility, Neufang’s name was a constant in conversation and therefore only fitting the new facility be dedicated in his memory.
“He has truly made a difference and his name will stay with us for years to come,” she said.
Aptly named the Bill Neufang Facility, construction of the concessions building was completed last summer and opened for business at the beginning of the 2011-12 school year.
“There are a lot of words that describe Bill,” school board president Burrill Wells said, but the one that stood out above the rest was “passionate.”
Not only did he care about all the kids he encountered, but he “expected you to do well, demanding you do well,” Wells added.
Wells was not only one of Neufang’s students, but served with him during his time on the Baldwinsville Central School Board of Education and was given the opportunity to know him as a teacher, colleague and friend.