SEQUIM — Sequim Alumni Association members are urging the Sequim School District to name its athletic field for the late Myron Teterud, known as a longtime Sequim High School sports fan.
Teterud, who rooted on SHS athletics for the past six decades, died April 30 at 81. He suffered a stroke in early 2019.
His passion for all things Sequim, from the Irrigation Festival to Sequim High School football and basketball games, left such an indelible memory on locals that the Sequim Alumni Association in fall 2020 began asking the Sequim School District to consider naming the SHS sports field after Teterud.
“I don’t think that Sequim schools will know another Myron,” alumni association member Phyllis Meyer said.
Meyer, Bob Bilow and Bob Clark each advocated naming the athletic field to the Sequim School Board on Monday.
Additionally, board president Brandino Gibson read a number of public comments submitted to the board in support of the association’s effort.
“I’ve known Myron almost all of his life; I can truthfully say there was no better fan of SHS athletics than Myron Teterud,” Clark told board directors.
“He truthfully became a mascot of any athletic team,” Clark said.
For decades, Teterud would be decked out in Sequim High purple in gold, walking the sidelines or sitting up in the stands at SHS football and basketball games, softball and baseball games, track meets and wrestling matches alike.
He also had a place on the SHS bus for away games.
Teterud was a regular figure at community events as well, enjoying civic celebrations along with church and grange events.
Meyer, who served as Sequim Irrigation Festival royalty mom for several years, recalled taking Teterud along with the festival crew for out-of-town parades.
School board members didn’t commit to renaming the field, but most voiced support for either creating a new policy or adjusting current policy to address naming/renaming of school facilities.
“I don’t think any of us have any doubt of the impact Myron had on students and the school and this community,” board president Brandino Gibson said Monday.
“We have to be careful of setting a precedence, of a board deciding something (outside of a policy).”
Board member Brian Kuh said the association’s comments were compelling.
“Their testimony … I was moved to tears, just absolutely blown away,” Kuh said. “From what I understand … this is exactly why we do these sort of things. They make movies about people like Myron.”
Association member Bob Clark said the group will host an all-class reunion in August 2022, and that would be an “ideal” time for a field-naming ceremony, as many alumni attending the reunion would have known Myron.
Association members began advocating the name change in 2020, but health restrictions relating to the coronavirus pandemic have postponed all non-essential school district business to whenever boards can host in-person meetings.
Phyllis Meyer — a Sequim High graduate (Class of 1969) and alumni association member — brought up the idea of honoring Myron at an association meeting in February 2020.
“He’s not a close friend of mine … (but) I’ve had a lot of kids go through Sequim High, so I’ve seen Myron a lot,” Meyer said in a September 2020 interview. “I (told association members), ‘We should do something for Myron’; It just came to my head. Before the words were even out of my mouth, heads were nodding and (saying) ‘yes, yes, yes.’ ”
The vote, Meyer said, was unanimous.
“Our motto is, ‘If you don’t know Myron, you don’t know Sequim,’ ” she said.
Bilow, who attended Sequim High and met Teterud when Bilow’s family moved to Sequim in 1959, said something similar to Sequim Little League’s naming of a field to honor Don Knapp would be appropriate.
“(Myron) has done so much for this school,” Bilow said.
Support for Teterud has come in bundles, Meyer said in September, with more than a hundred emails backing the drive to honor Sequim’s super fan.
“Myron will be remembered by many, but he should never be forgotten,” Meyer said at Monday’s board meeting.
Dave Ditlefsen, Sequim High School athletic director, said in September 2020 that it might be more appropriate to post plaques at the stadium and inside the gymnasium rather than renaming the stadium; school athletic building names are typically reserved for Hall of Fame coaches and the like, he said.
“Myron is certainly someone we want to recognize for his support for teams for 50-plus years,” Ditlefsen said.
“We understand the love he has for Wolves athletics, (and) our teams have always included him as a member of our family,” he said. “There’s definitely a place for him to be recognized.”
Sequim High has one facility bearing a name: The Rick Kaps Gymnasium that hosts boys and girls basketball games as well as volleyball and wrestling matches and physical education classes.
Kaps, who coached SHS and Goldendale boys varsity basketball teams to the tune of a 255-148 record and whose 1988 Sequim team finished second in the class AAA state tourney, died of cancer in 1998 at age 55.
Michael Dashiell is the editor of the Sequim Gazette of the Olympic Peninsula News Group, which also is composed of other Sound Publishing newspapers Peninsula Daily News and Forks Forum. Reach him at [email protected].