David Bohan, 10-year-old son of the late Paul Bohan, asked a room filled with his father’s family, friends, former students and colleagues to stand if they loved his dad.

No one was seated.

On Tuesday, the Paul Bohan Hornet Gym at Huntsville High School was officially dedicated in honor of Paul Bohan’s contributions as a teacher and coach.

“This just warms my heart. We’re all upbeat and happy tonight,” said Paul Bohan’s wife, Susan. “We’ve chosen from every different kind of person that was involved in his life to speak about him. They helped us through this. In fact, I think we helped each other. They loved him.”

Colby Tiner, a representative from U.S. Rep. Kevin Brady’s office, officially dedicated the gym.

“After the process, we went through to name the gym in his honor, we want to call the community’s attention to it,” said HISD Superintendent Richard Montgomery. “The kind of people we want to remember are those that put kids first, and he was that kind of person.”

Bohan died April 1, 2002.

The process to dedicate the gym began in 2003, when a student named Linden Wooderson started a petition in his honor.

The petition soon had almost 1,500 signitures on it, but no official decisions were made until Jerrilyn Bulloch, the HHS senior class sponsor, took the petition to Principal Mike Lamb in February of this year.

By March, the board of trustees passed a resolution to name the gym after Bohan.

Remembering a legend

During his life, Bohan met one of his daughter’s dates at the front door with a BB gun. He went to Jack in the Box and asked for straightened curly fries. He also had a thing about forgetting minor details, like paying parking tickets on school campuses.

He also managed to positively affect the lives of everyone around him, including his students, friends, colleagues and family members.

Guest speakers at the dedication ceremony ranged from Bohan’s former students, colleagues, classmates and neighbors.

As each of the speakers concluded their comments, they asked those in the audience who knew Bohan the way they did to stand and be recognized.

Kendall Cason, who had been one of Bohan’s students, said that HISD had chosen a great person to honor with the dedication.

“Bohan was a man who touched so many lives. He was a wonderful family man, coach and educator,” he said. “He had special relationships with everyone he came in contact with.”

Jim Driscoll, who taught at HHS with Bohan, said that colleagues were just as affected by knowing him as his students were.

“As a teacher, Bohan was great to teach with. He was a person that could always lift your spirits,” he said. “The students absolutely loved him and respected him, and he loved them and wanted them to be better.”

To Mitch Coey, one of the coaches Bohan worked with, Bohan was also the source of inspiration that made him want to become a teacher and a coach in the first place.

“We were classmates, we graduated together, and we even lived together for a while,” Coey said. “His values weren’t about money. He cared about the kids in the community, and he was a true Huntsville Hornet.”

Susan Bohan concluded ceremony by thanking everyone that had contributed to the ceremony, including the HHS graduating class of 2007, who purchased the lettering for the gym’s name.

She said that even those that never met Bohan personally had gotten to know him through knowing their three children.

“It’s going to be cool sitting up there watching my son do a left-handed lay up that my husband taught him, especially in a gym named after him,” she said.

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