Waukon High School gymnasium to be dedicated in honor of long-time basketball coach Dave Schoeberlein at this Friday’s girls home games

Dave Schoeberlein ...
Dave Schoeberlein ...

This Friday, December 7, the Waukon High School gymnasium will be dedicated in honor and in the name of a man who likely spent more time and touched more lives in that same gym and during his coaching and teaching career than anyone else. During this Friday’s home game series against Oelwein for the Waukon girls basketball team, a ceremony will be held between the junior varsity and varsity contests to unveil what will be the newly dedicated Dave Schoeberlein Gymnasium at Waukon High School.

“Waukon High School is excited to host such an emotionally gratifying event honoring a man who dedicated his life to positively impact those around him,” Waukon High School Activities Director Brian Hilsabeck shared. “We will unveil a few items in the naming and dedication of the gym to our fallen, yet not forgotten, teacher and coach, Mr. Dave Schoeberlein. The event was started with a group of Coach Schoeberlein’s former players wanting to give back to him and honor him in a way that was meaningful and lasting. The players ‘jumped through the hoops’ (no pun intended with Dave’s sarcasm there) and went through the process to have such a dedication approved. Dave’s morals were built on positive relationships, trust, honor, and he was never going to be outworked in being prepared and organized. We would love to see the stands packed for this event and invite all who knew Dave to come be part of this event.”

The night’s events will begin with a combined freshman/junior varsity game scheduled for a 6:15 p.m. start. Following the conclusion of that contest - a scene Coach Schoeberlein had graced for more than 30 years as a junior varsity and varsity assistant coach for the Waukon girls basketball program prior to his unexpected passing September 28, 2017, a dedication ceremony will take place to forever commemorate the contributions Coach Schoeberlein made to the Waukon girls basketball program and to countless lives of students in the classroom and athletes on the court, field, track or elsewhere during his teaching and coaching career.

That dedication will include the unveiling of new lettering above the larger scoreboard on the north end of the gymnasium, as well as lettering and a plaque located at the west set of double entrance doors to the gym from the lunch room area. Activities Director Hilsabeck and Coach Schoeberlein’s wife, Janet, will be offering words of tribute in honor of Coach Schoeberlein during the ceremony as well.

Following the dedication ceremony, the evening’s game series will conclude with the varsity contest between Oelwein and Waukon. At the completion of the game competition, a reception will be held in the Waukon High School cafeteria. A further social gathering will also take place at the Waukon City Club on Main Street in Waukon.

The dedication and the transformation of the gymnasium to Dave Schoeberlein Gymnasium was made possible by contributions gifted by the Waukon girls basketball “family” of past players and others associated with the program. Former Waukon Indian girls basketball players Carlyn (Wacker) Lechtenberg (Class of 2005), Mullen (Wacker) Beisker (Class of 2012) and Samantha (Reiser) Collins (Class of 2005), along with Kerry Wacker, who coached junior high girls basketball for many years with Coach Schoeberlein, were instrumental in making this dedication event possible.

“Coach Schoeberlein positively impacted hundreds of student-athletes’ lives, on and off the court, over a period of three decades,” Lechtenberg shared on behalf of the Waukon girls basketball family. “Besides actively coaching, he spent countless hours behind the scenes making sure the program ran flawlessly. We, as a basketball unit, feel there is no one more deserving of this recognition. We hope everyone feels proud and honored to be walking into a facility that represents the values and commitment exhibited by Coach Schoeberlein. The outpouring of support shows that he touched a lot of lives to put on an event of this nature. He led by example and not only taught us basketball skills, but instilled many life lessons.”

The gymnasium for Friday’s games will feature a reserved section of bleacher seating for former Waukon girls basketball players and their families. It was also optional for any former players/families to order a t-shirt to wear the night of the game that features a quote “WE are ONE,” a message Coach Schoeberlein would use often for t-shirts, handouts and other inspirational opportunities. That message is also included on the plaque being unveiled.

Those seeking more information or wanting to make a contribution to the Dave Schoeberlein Gymnasium should contact Carlyn Lechtenberg at fontandfoto@gmail.com.

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