Blackville-Hilda High legendary football coach David Berry is considered by his collegues as one of the elite coaches around.
On July 27 at the TD Center in Greenville, Berry received the ultimate honor a coach can receive when he was enshrined into the South Carolina Athletic Coaches Association Hall of Fame.
Berry was one of seven inductees. He was joined on the night by John Lewis Byrd, David M. Gutshall, Mike Johnson, Mickey Moss, Tim Whipple and Willie L. Wooden.
Blackville-Hilda High Athletic Director Michael Beasley is the President of the South Carolina Athletic Coaches Association.
After the announcement, Beasley shook hands with Berry and presented him with the Hall of Fame plaque and ring.
An emotional Berry then took the podium and address a crowd of nearly 300 which included special guests, plus former and current coaches.
"I would like to thank the the selection committee and our Coaches Association Board for making this honor possible," Berry said.
"I'm honored and humbled to be included in this group of inductees."
Berry said coaching is a time-consuming profession, so he wanted to thank the people closest to him who made the sacrifices to make the moment possible.
"Most of all I would like to thank my parents for all the sacrifices they made throughout the years. They are ones who made it possible for me and my brother to do the things we've been able to do," Berry said.
"I'd also like to thank my wife, Joan, my two sons, daughter in-law and grandchildren for being so supportive."
Berry has been head coach at Blackville-Hilda High for the past 25 years. What's more impressive, Berry has had 24 consecutive winning seasons which included 245 wins and three State Championships (1995, 2005 and 2007)
In addition, Berry's teams have captured 13 Region Titles and six times were Lower State Runner-ups.
Berry has garnered many post season honors. They included being an assistant coach in the 1999 North-South All-Star game in Myrtle Beach and in the 2002 Shrine Bowl in Rock Hill.
In 2011, Berry was named head coach of the North South game.
Berry's North Team dominated the South Team in the contest by a score of 42-3.
Berry was also recognized in 2006 as the South Carolina Coach of The Year and the National Federation South Sectional Coach of The Year.
Berry said his life's work is the result of a very good supporting cast.
"I've been fortunate enough to be in one place for a long period of time. I would like to thank our administration and school board, both past and present, for keeping me around," Berry said.
"I would like to thank our players and families for all their support. I'd also like to thank all the coaches that I've been fortunate enough to work with. They are the ones that deserve all the credit. I've learned more from them than they've learned from me."
Beasley said having Berry enshrined in the Hall of Fame speaks volumes of Blackville-Hilda High athletics.
"I'm really honored to say I've coached with two hall of fame coaches in David Berry and Farrell Zissette," Beasley said.
"For Blackville-Hilda High to have two coaches go into the Hall of Fame is a true testament to our program. Coach Berry is recognized tonight as one of the winngest coaches in South Carolina history."
Berry is a 27 year member of the SCACA and past board member of the SCFCA. He is a native of Travelers Rest and is married to Joan Berry.
They have two children Dave and Brandon Berry and grandchildren Harlee, Harper, Kinsley and Keaton.
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