by Al Munns

The blue eyes were a gateway

Drawing us into his world of drawls and dreams -

Demands and invitations.

It was a world of irresistibly sharp contrasts:

Teacher, coach, brand new principal...brand new school.

An enigma at twenty-six!

(Many of the guys thought he was cool;

Many of the girls thought he was hot.)

Husband, father, man of God, a walking reminder

That tough can be tender when really needed.

Yes, the red ears were a warning sign,

And caring that much about something had to be hard...

The surety of consequence: it was really just that simple.

Decades at Ragsdale--a constant during times of change.

A man of response when silence would have been easier.

Twenty GOOD years for thousands of students.

Then the challenges of promotion.

So many central office roles performed with dignity and class

On his end...

Through it all a mentor and role model for

How to do the right thing.

But all along, "Mr. Madison"

Was only a grin away from being just "TG"

And by the way:

The gateway has relocated...

Not closed.

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