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Cliff Parker

Coaching ∙ Aliquippa

 

 

 

 

Cliff Parker was a former boys' and girls' track and field coach at Aliquippa High School and an educator. His ultimate mission in life was serving others as a religious leader. Ordained an elder in 1963, at the Church in the Round, he was especially active in visiting the sick in hospitals or shut-ins at their homes.

Parker used the communication skills he learned as an elder and Man of God, not only to coach his athletes, but to be an outstanding example and role model for his teams. He was the only father figure many of his student-athletes from single parent households ever had in their lives. His influence continues to touch the lives of those who worked with and ran for him.

He also had the rare ability to make something out of nothing. For instance, those familiar with Aliquippa’s track program know that unlike the other ones in Beaver County, The Aliquippa school district did not have a track upon which to train its team members.

Not withstanding, Coach Parker – a world class hurdler in his own right – was able to impart that which he knew in innovative ways that made his "Road Show" one of the most successful track and field programs in the tri-state area. Year after year, he developed his team’s talents and they would go on to distinguish themselves at local, invitational, district and state track meets.

Parker was a graduate of Huntington High School in Newport News Virginia. He received his Bachelors degree in 1956 from Virginia State. He began teaching at Aliquippa in 1963. While no one seems to know when he actually began coaching the track team, no one can remember when Parker wasn’t coaching the track team.

Due to the absence of a track, Coach Parker’s teams did not win many overall team competitions, however his total track program and athletes were recognized as one of the best and most competitive throughout Beaver County and Western Pennsylvania.

Mr. Parker is survived by his wife LuVerda and son C.J. Parker Jr. Interestingly, Mr Parker’s obituary in 1999, lists two other adopted sons, Vernon Brown and Mike "General" Mealer. Both are graduates of Aliquippa High School and weren’t officially adopted. They were just so fond of their coach they wanted to be known as his son. As were many of his other students. They just didn’t get into his obituary.
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