DOBSON — The Surry County Sports Hall of Fame Committee along with the Surry County Parks and Recreation will induct Blois (Bud) Grissom along with John B. Anderson, Ed Callaway, Donald Gray Davis Sr., Richard (Buzz) Hauser, F.A. Martin, Ben Norman and Kelly Jack swift into the Surry County Sports Hall of Fame on Saturday at 4 p.m., in the Surry Community College gymnasium.
The ceremony will include a Ring of Honor awards ceremony, honoring teams, individuals, groups or organizations who have contributed to the community because of their love of sports. Ring of Honor inductees this year are the 2002 Mount Airy Basketball team, Robert H. Moody, Al Peavy and Keri W. Campbell and Christie Sanders.
Blois (Bud) Grissom graduated from Elkin High School in 1968, where he earned recognition as the All-Conference Northwestern 3A Football Defensive Tackle, Honorable Mention Prep All-American, and received an invitation to play in the North Carolina Shrine Bowl Game.
He went on to play defensive tackle under Bill Dooley for the North Carolina Tarheels, competing on a team that won the Atlantic Coast Conference Championship that year.
As a Tarheel, Grissom was named All-Atlantic Coast Conference Defensive Tackle player in 1971 and received AP honorable mention recognition as defensive tackle. Grissom graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1972.
“Dooley was big on being a student first and then an athlete,” stated Grissom.
According to Grissom, “There was a way of thinking that included living both on and off the field. ”
Grissom and his coaches called that term, “citizenship,” Grissom stated.
“Being a good citizen in school and a good example in the community,” is how Grissom defined this term.
“It was very important to coaches and to players in those days, and embraced all areas of life and faith.”
Grissom said, “I credit success in life to what you leave behind and what they will think of you. You can be a great successful athlete, talent wise, but if you cannot embrace the ‘citizenship’ concept, that includes academics, sports, faith and your family, none of it will mean very much.”
“I had very supportive parents and my father was a coach and principal.”
Grissom is retired from the North Carolina Army National Guard and as public school teacher, coach, and principal.
“The coaches and teachers that I had in high school helped us tremendously and we had great teammates. Coach John Charles, was a World War II veteran and came from old school football,” said Grissom.
“He (Charles) and Ronnie Hooper were interested in motivating me and others to achieve and so were the coaches at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill,” said Grissom of their work in academics and on the field.
“I am humbled by the honor that is being given to me,” said Grissom. “A lot of players and teachers have helped me achieve.”
Grissom laughed about “citizenship” compared to what is sometimes called the prima-donna complex in sports. “It did not happen in his day, too much,” he said. Under those coaches, one learned pretty quick that “you are not just one, but that you are also part of a team.”
“I’ve tried my best to pass on to my children what sports and the term, citizenship has meant to me. As they grow older, I hope they will truly know what it has meant. Thoughts are formed and become your values. I try to relay that as a teacher and a coach.”
He resides in Rutherfordton, where he lives with his wife, Janet. They have two sons, Kevin and Anson.
Reach Tanya Chilton at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 719-1921.