Hoosick community comes out in force to honor Coach Jones
HOOSICK, N.Y. — The Hoosick Falls community came together to celebrate the life of long-time teacher and football coach Ron Jones in the only way it knows how.
A parade worthy of a state championship started at the Hoosick Falls Central School, snaked its way through the village as dozens of people cheered on the procession from the sidewalks.
It was part of a two-pronged honoring of Jones, who died on Monday at the age of 51.
The first part was a planned "Friday Night Lights," where many schools that have lights turned them on from 7 to 9 p.m. Lots of schools participated from all sides of the section, even schools that don't have lights. One school in Section III, Adirondack, is the alma mater of defensive coordinator Eamonn DeGraaf, they also put on their lights in honor of Jones.
The second part was the parade, which came together quickly over the past day. Set up by Fuzz and Camilla Hathaway, they had to do something that also conformed to social distancing rules.
"It came together in 24 hours and decided we really wanted to honor Coach Jones in some way, even if it is unconventional in times like this," said Camilla Hathaway.
People who wanted to be a part of the parade had to line up in their cars and four lines of cars filled the Hoosick Falls school parking lot waiting to go.
"When Coach Jones won a big, we went through and honked the horns and lit them up," Camilla Hathaway said.
Fuzz Hathaway is a coach in the Hoosick Falls Youth Football league and he said he was proud to give people an opportunity to pay tribute to Jones.
"I didn't care if it was a couple people or a thousand, it is a way to honor the legacy that he left behind," Fuzz Hathaway said.
On Saturday, the community will be allowed to go on the school campus to pay their respects to Jones personally. Members of the community can leave mementos, but with social distancing in effect, visitors must wear a face covering or mask and must maintain social distancing. The field will be open to the public from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
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