A Letter to My Coach, Wayne Hager

Dear Coach (Wayne),

I am so sorry that I am away on business in Ottawa and unable to attend your induction ceremony to the Westdale Sports Hall of Fame.

Allow me to add my voice to the many former staff, students and athletes who will be on hand to celebrate your remarkable contributions to our school and community over so many years.  In retrospect, I was so fortunate to have had you as my coach during an important time of transition to adulthood in my life.  You were always kind, patient and respectful of kids from every walk of life.  But most importantly, you demanded the best in each of us and in so doing instilled a resilience to adversity that has served me well over the course of my life and career.

Quite simply, Coach, you were a profound difference maker for many of us, and for that we will be forever grateful.


Terry Cooke


The writing of this letter was in no way influenced by your Hamilton Spectator interview of some years ago in which you confirmed that I was the best point guard that you ever coached at Westdale!  (With apologies to Herwig Baldauf, Billy Prior, Danny Casuccio, D.I. Milligan and numerous others that I may have forgotten…)