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CARY — Sandra Kay Yow, 66, of Cary, N.C., died peacefully Saturday, January 24, 2009, after a courageous and inspirational battle with cancer.
The funeral will be held at 3 p.m. Friday, January 30, at Colonial Baptist Church, 6051 Tryon Road, Cary NC 27518, with Pastor Mitchell Gregory. The burial will take place 10 a.m. Saturday, January 31, at the Gibsonville City Cemetery, 1208 Springwood Ave. Gibsonville, NC 27249.
Born on March 14, 1942, in Gibsonville, N.C., to Hilton Lee and Elizabeth Cora Scoggins Yow, she was the oldest of four children. She received her Bachelor degree in English, with a minor in library science, from East Carolina University in 1964 and her Master’s degree from UNC-Greensboro in 1971. She was a member of Cary Alliance Church.
For more than four decades, she was a basketball coach, a teacher and role model to the players she coached at Allen Jay High School in High Point, N.C.; Gibsonville High School; Elon College and NC State University. She taught them to be fiercely competitive in the game she learned to love from her parents, yet accept both their wins and losses with grace and dignity.
She won eight NCAIAW state championships at Elon and NC State, guided the Wolfpack to four ACC Tournament titles and was honored as the state, ACC and national coach of the year on multiple occasions. In 1998, she took the Wolfpack to the Final Four, the pinnacle of her 20 trips to the NCAA Tournament.
On December 14, 2008, in her next to last game on the sidelines, she became just the third coach in history to coach more than 1,000 games at the same school. In 38 years as a college coach, she compiled a 737-344 record.
In 1986, she led the United States to gold medals in the World University Games and the Goodwill Games. In 1988, she was the head coach of the United States that won an Olympic gold medal in Seoul, South Korea, just 10 months after being diagnosed with breast cancer.
In 2002, she became just the fifth woman in history to be enshrined in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, for her national and international success as a coach and her pioneering efforts to grow women’s college basketball.
Her greatest victories, however, came not on the basketball court, but in her public battles with cancer, the disease that claimed her mother, Lib; her hero, Everett Case; and her friend, Jim Valvano. First diagnosed in 1987, she lived cancer-free until 2004. Over the last five years, she waged a gracious fight, never complaining and always maintaining a positive outlook in the face of painful and arduous treatments. “When life kicks you,” she said, “let it kick you forward.”
She was a role model to millions, a friend to many and a kind, smiling companion to strangers.
Kay found her strength and courage through her relationship with Jesus Christ, whom she accepted in 1975. She studied His words in the Bible, and lived them on a daily basis. She found peace and comfort in her final days, knowing that she had done good work here on earth and her next place would be at her Savior’s side.
She is survived by her brother, Ronnie Yow of Greensboro, N.C.; sisters, Deborah Ann Yow and husband, Dr. William Bowden of College Park, Md., and Susan Lee Yow of Charlotte, N.C.; nephews, Jason Andrew Yow and wife, Melissa Ann, Zachary Lee Yow, and James Dylan Yow; and one great- niece, Isabelle Kay Yow.
A public viewing will be held from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. Friday, January 30, at the church.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Kay Yow/WBCA Cancer Fund and mailed to The V Foundation for Cancer Research, 106 Towerview Court, Cary, NC 27513, Phone: (919) 380-9505 (Toll free 1-800-4JimmyV), https://www.jimmyv.org/support-us/donate-now.html or Cary Alliance Church, 4108 Ten Ten Road, Apex, NC 27539, (919) 467-9331.
Audio and written condolences may be sent to the family at www.brownwynne. com
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Longtime North Carolina State women’s coach Kay Yow dies
6:17 AM PST, January 24, 2009
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RALEIGH (AP) – N.C. State’s Kay Yow, the Hall of Fame women’s basketball coach who won more than 700 games while earning fans with her decades-long fight against breast cancer, died on Saturday. She was 66.
Yow, first diagnosed with the disease in 1987, died Saturday morning at WakeMed Cary Hospital after being admitted there last week, university spokeswoman Annabelle Myers said.
“I think she understood that keeping it going was inspirational to other people who were in the same boat she was in,” Dr. Mark Graham, Yow’s longtime oncologist, said Saturday.
Yow won more than 700 games in a career filled with milestones. She coached the U.S. Olympic team to a gold medal in 1988, won four Atlantic Coast Conference tournament championships, earned 20 NCAA tournament bids and reached the Final Four in 1998.
She also was inducted into the Naismith Hall of Fame in 2002, while the school dedicated “Kay Yow Court” in Reynolds Coliseum in 2007.
But for many fans, Yow was best defined by her unwavering resolve while fighting cancer, from raising awareness and money for research to staying with her team through the debilitating effects of the disease and chemotherapy treatments. In her final months, Yow was on hormonal therapy as the cancer spread to her liver and bone.
She never flinched or complained, relying on her faith as the disease progressed. She commonly noted there were other patients with “harder battles than I’m fighting” and said it was inspiring for her to stay with her team.
“Almost everybody is dealing with something,” Yow said in a 2006 interview.
“We’re all faced with a lot of tough issues that we’re dealing with,” she said. “We know we need to just come to the court and let that be our catharsis in a way. You can’t bring it on the court with you, but we can all just think of basketball as an escape for a few hours.”
Yow announced earlier this month that she would not return to the team this season after she missed four games because of what was described as an extremely low energy level.
The team visited Yow in the hospital before leaving Wednesday for a game at Miami. Associate head coach Stephanie Glance – who led the team in Yow’s absences – met with the team Saturday morning to inform them Yow had died, Myers said.
Graham remembered how Yow always took time to talk to other patients when she came in for treatments in recent years.
“She could have tried to come into the clinic and be completely anonymous,” he said. “She just wanted to be another patient. She was very open to sharing her experiences with others and being encouraging to others.
Yow’s fight was never more public than when she took a 16-game leave to focus on her treatments during the 2006-07 season. After her return, her inspired Wolfpack won 12 of its final 15 games with wins against highly ranked rivals Duke and North Carolina in a run that attracted plenty of fans wearing pink – the color of breast-cancer awareness.
Her players also wore pink shoelaces for their coach.
“There were so many times I felt like giving up,” forward Khadijah Whittington said after the Wolfpack’s loss to Connecticut in the 2007 NCAA tournament’s round of 16, “and then I see Coach Yow and she never gives up.”
Yow always found ways to keep coaching even as she fought the disease. She spent most of games during that emotional 2007 run sitting on the bench while Glance stood to shout instructions at players or to help a weakened Yow to her feet.
“She’s the Iron Woman, with the Lord’s help,” Glance said.
Yow was quick to embrace her role as an example for others battling the disease. She often found herself going about her daily activities in Raleigh only to have someone stop her and say they were praying for her or that she was an inspiration to them.
“When they say that, it really gives me a lift because it’s at that time I know for sure that I’m not going through it for nothing,” Yow said in 2007. “That means a lot to me. I have to go through it. I accept that, and I’m not panicked about it because the Lord is in control. But it just would be so saddening if I had to go through it and I couldn’t help people.
Born March 14, 1942, Sandra Kay Yow originally took up coaching to secure a job teaching high school English at Allen Jay High School in High Point in the 1960s. Her boss, along with the boys’ coach, agreed to help her plan practices and to sit on the bench with her during games. Midway through the season, Yow was on her own.
“Really, it was like love at first sight,” she said in 2004.
She spent four years there followed by another year in her hometown at Gibsonville High, compiling a 92-27 record. She moved on to Elon, going 57-19 in four seasons before being hired at N.C. State in 1975.
Her original cancer diagnosis came the year before coaching the United States to the gold in the Seoul Olympics. She had a mastectomy as part of her treatment, then discovered a lump in November 2004 close to where cancer was first discovered. She had surgery that December and started on a regimen of radiation and daily hormone therapy. Still, the cancer came back again and again.
She missed two games of the 2004-05 season while attending an eight-day nutritional modification program, which called on her to eat an organic-food diet free of meat, dairy products and sugar. She stayed on the diet for eight months, losing 40 pounds by keeping junk food and Southern favorites like biscuits and gravy off her menu.
Still, she cheated on her organic diet during home recruiting visits because she didn’t want to offend anyone by passing on a home-cooked meal.
Over the years, Yow never lost her folksy, easygoing manner and refused to dwell on her health issues, though they colored everything she did almost as much as basketball. Ultimately, her philosophy on both were the same.
“If you start to dwell on the wrong things, it’ll take you down fast,” Yow said in ’07. “Every morning, I wake up and the first thing I think of is I’m thankful. I’m thankful for another day.”
A public viewing will be held Friday, January 30th from 10:00 a.m. till 2:00 p.m. with the funeral to follow at 3:00 p.m. at Colonial Baptist Church in Cary. The burial will take place Saturday, January 31st, 10:00am at the Gibsonville Cemetery in Gibsonville.
The funeral arrangements were made by Brown Wynn Funeral Home of 200 SE Maynard Road in Cary.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to:
Kay Yow/WBCA Cancer Fund
The V Foundation for Cancer Research
106 Towerview Court
Cary, NC 27513
Phone: 919-380-9505 (Toll free 1-800-4JimmyV)
Cary Alliance Church
4108 Ten Ten Road
Apex, NC 27539
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Many arriving inaugural tourists dived right into Washington rituals. At Ben’s Chili Bowl on U Street NW — which was upgraded from a local to a national icon this month when Obama dropped in for a chili half-smoke and sweet tea — crowds got so big that the staff started turning them away at 10:25 a.m. Many were directed to another D.C. favorite: the Florida Avenue Grill. Click the above photo for some history and interviews on Ben’s.
Below is a Washington Post article describing the Saturday arrivals into our Nation’s Capitol for the big historical event
Visitors Pour Into D.C., Loaded With Luggage But Lightened by Hope
By David A. Fahrenthold
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, January 18, 2009
They were rolling north, at the end of a four-hour drive from Durham, N.C., almost there. The rest of the car was focused on the directions to a hotel downtown.
Then the Washington Monument appeared in the distance.
Anjanée Bell pointed it out, but the others were distracted. So she savored her thrill in silence.
“That was the moment to say, you know, ‘We’re really here,’ ” said Bell, 31, the artistic director for a dance company. She had visited Washington before, but Bell said she could feel something different in the capital at that moment yesterday — even if, technically, she was still in Virginia.
Inauguration fever broke out across the Washington region yesterday as thousands of visitors began filtering into spare bedrooms, rundown motels and four-star lobbies. They came with Obama action figures, with snoozing babies, with homemade signs and with a more noble view of the capital than most of its full-time residents can sustain.
And many came with memories that made this occasion — the swearing-in of the first African American president — seem wonderful and a little unreal.
“I lived through segregation,” said Marion Garrison, 87, of Bakersfield, Calif. She and five friends were settling in at a Comfort Inn along New York Avenue NE. “I waited for this. It finally came.”
Yesterday was expected to be one of the busiest arrival days for inaugural guests: All but 400 or so of the District’s 29,000 hotel rooms were booked.
But the rush didn’t seem to strain the seams of a city used to conventions and tourists. Highways flowed smoothly. Airports were busy — Baltimore-Washington International Marshall Airport reported 28,000 passengers, up from 20,000 on a normal day — but didn’t feel Thanksgiving-crowded.
“I worked so hard on the campaign that I just wanted to see the fruits of my labor. I’m excited. I’m elated,” said LaRue Henderson, 73, who had flown in from Atlanta with her daughter and a friend.
They were waiting at Reagan National Airport for a ride to a relative’s home in Falls Church, where they will stay for the long weekend. The group brought along Obama T-shirts and caps, although they needn’t have worried. Every business in the region with a roof and a cash register seemed to be selling inauguration souvenirs yesterday.
For some airline passengers, the celebration of Obama’s swearing-in began even before they touched down. Len Solak, 59, of Albuquerque arrived at BWI wearing a homemade sign around his neck. “We The People get our country back in THREE days! (Loyal opposition is welcome, but cynics can go home!),” it said.
“It was the most photographed sign on the plane,” said Solak, who bought his ticket to Washington in September despite his wife’s fears that he would jinx the election. “Of course, it was also the only sign on the plane.”
Many arriving tourists dived right into Washington rituals. At Ben’s Chili Bowl on U Street NW — which was upgraded from a local to a national icon this month when Obama dropped in for a chili half-smoke and sweet tea — crowds got so big that the staff started turning them away at 10:25 a.m. Many were directed to another D.C. favorite: the Florida Avenue Grill.
Some visitors were inventing their own rituals. The Hauldren family, from the Chicago suburb of Northfield, Ill., brought along a small plastic action figure of Obama, which they planned to photograph at major Washington landmarks.
Such as . . . the Court House Metro station.
“We took a picture of him on the plane, and we took a picture of him here,” said Julia Hauldren, 43, a stay-at-home mother who was at the station yesterday morning with her husband and four children. She said the idea was inspired by Flat Stanley, a children’s toy that is supposed to be photographed in strange and exotic locales. “We thought we’d do sort of [a] Flat Stanley, but with Tiny Obama.”
On a Greyhound bus from Pittsburgh, Gloria Moore was talking about living in segregated Selma, Ala. She was taking her 13-year-old granddaughter to see a black man become president and thinking about those who didn’t live to see it.
“I wish my grandmother who never learned to read and worked in the cotton fields of North Carolina could see this,” Moore said. She thought of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., too. She added: “I believe God orchestrated this. It is time for a change.”
And as they were arriving, Washington was getting ready. Thousands of National Guard soldiers filed into the D.C. Armory, carrying green duffle bags and wearing fleece jackets under their camouflage uniforms for warmth. As many as 10,000 Guard members from 25 states and territories will be involved in Tuesday’s festivities, the largest deployment of citizen-soldiers for any inauguration.
Other preparations ranged from the elaborate to the mundane. In the lobby of the Capitol Hilton downtown, Brooks Brothers had set up a satellite office for pre-gala fashion emergencies, selling formal coats and giving bowtie lessons. At Frager’s Hardware on Capitol Hill, people began streaming through the doors at 7:15 a.m. to buy hand warmers (still some left) and toe warmers (all out), plus space heaters and weather stripping for houses full of guests.
And keys. Lots of keys. At midday, 15 people were snaked down a narrow aisle of the store waiting to have copies of keys made for their inaugural guests.
“I noticed the lines back there, but it didn’t dawn on me why it was,” said general manager Nick Kaplanis. “It has been extra heavy back there all [day] long.”
In the lobby of the Mayflower hotel downtown, florist Jerome Williams, 60, was touching up his displays, wearing a plaid shirt in a lobby full of suits. Among other arrangements, he had made eight special ones with red roses, white orchids and blue hybrid delphiniums.
Now Williams was checking the flowers again, wanting them to be perfect. He plucked out a rose that was turning slightly more crimson than the rest of the bouquet.
Williams, who lives in Charles County, said he sensed a special enthusiasm among the hotel’s employees, most of whom voted for Obama. Williams said he thought the man himself might walk down this hallway, past these flowers.
“I just want to show my best” in case Obama passes, he said. “Wanted to show the things in my repertoire.”
Even for the workers who didn’t get to see the visitors arriving, the first day of the inaugural weekend brought a special electricity. Renee Sullivan-Norris, 47, of Prince George’s County spent the day in a closed-in office behind the front desk at the Marriott Wardman Park, manning the hotel switchboard.
Throughout the day, she talked to tourists who wanted directions from the airport or updates on their seats for Inauguration Day events.
In five of those conversations, she said, people had spontaneously told her, “Congratulations!”
Why would that be?
“Because I live in D.C., and I guess they figure we need some help about now,” she said. “I say, ‘Thank you, and congratulations to you, too.’ “
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Dr. James C. Renick, Former A&T Chancellor
An investigation ordered by Guilford County North Carolina District Attorney Doug Henderson, concluded that neither former A&T Chancellor James C. Renick nor Anna Anita Huff, a program manager who was fired in September 2006, violated any laws or enriched themselves with misused funds discovered in a 2007 audit of the university’s finances.
In September 2007, Henderson asked the State Bureau of Investigation to look into a public released auditor’s report that found hundreds of thousands of dollars in university funds had been used inappropriately under the UNC accounting system.
The investigation focused on two funds: the Future Engineering Faculty Fellowship Program, funded by a grant from the Office of Naval Research that Huff managed, and a Pepsi vending contract. Money from that contract was intended for student financial aid and campus debt.
Investigators looked at nearly $400,000 from the Pepsi vending contracts that had been transferred into Renick’s discretionary fund.
Although audits found that money from the contracts purchased a $150,000 retirement annuity for a faculty member, travel and artwork, Henderson found the expenditures all benefited the university. Henderson wrote in a news release that Renick didn’t understand the restriction on the vending funds. “We find that former Chancellor James C. Renick did not act in bad faith or with criminal intent,” according to the news release.
Auditors also found that grant money from the Office of Naval Research used in the fellowship program had been spent on a stipend for Huff’s husband, a student in the program, and wages and travel expenses for her daughter, a student employee of the program. The Office of Naval Research approved all the spending and found it to be within the grant’s guidelines, according to the release.
Huff had no influence over the selection committee that chose her husband to participate in the program, and the committee could not have known they were married, according to the release.
Program equipment the audit found missing has been located, and hiring her daughter “was not on its face illegal,” Henderson said, adding, “the university received benefit from her services.”
Renick, left A&T in 2006 to take a position at the American Council on Education in Washington. Under Dr. Renick’s leadership, the University grew by leaps and bounds in enrollment, funding and physical plant.
Prior to the criminal investigation, a building under construction on campus was originally to bear Renick’s name, but a university spokeswoman said it would be named the School of Education Building instead. Whether the University will do the right thing and rename the building in his honor was not addressed by Mabel Scott.
Scott, a special assistant to the vice chancellor for Development and University Relations, declined to comment on Henderson’s decision Tuesday but said: “We are very proud of N.C. A&T State University. … We’re ranked third in research within the UNC system with over $40 million in research and (are) a top producer of graduates in engineering, psychology and accounting.” Scott failed to give credit to Renick’s leadership which elevated A&T to the status of which she speaks. For this reason it might be a great gesture to rename that Education Building in Renick’s honor thus removing the mud from his name.
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