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Gill leaves a lifetime of memories

On Friday, our area lost a true legend — a man who we knew and loved, and who inspired most of those whom knew him on a regular basis. We lost former Buckingham County High School varsity head football coach Craig Gill.

When thinking about the tragic loss and what to write about Gill, I don’t know where to start. Should I start at the first time I met Gill on the BCHS track, or should I talk about the best memory I have of him?

I think his last game of this past season is the most appropriate.

The Knights had traveled a little over four hours to compete in the second round of the Virginia High School League’s Region 2A West playoffs against Richlands High School.

The first half was dominated by Buckingham and the expierence felt like a fairy tale coming true. However, the second half was heart-crushing.

It was like watching a movie in slow motion. You could see Knights fans continue to cheer on their team even though the outcome wasn’t looking so pretty. You could see the look in each player’s eyes as they were reaching for a win that wasn’t going to happen. Richlands came out and was unstoppable, something that was non-existent in the first half, which made the situation so shocking.

But, the most heart-tugging moment took place at the end of the game. Gill had been yelling and cheering on his team, making his voice almost hoarse, and as the clock struck 00:00, there was a flicker of defeat in Gill’s eyes. It was only for a brief second, as he then held his head high, told his players to do the same and then shook every Richlands player and coach’s hands with respect.

The man we knew to be so tough and so strong was sad and it saddened us. We were devoted to him and his team, and the loss hurt us too.

Gill built that team and the football program and gave us an experience like no one else could.

He cared so much for his team, as if they were his own children,, and he taught us life lessons, like how to hold your head high in the saddest of moments.

He was truly a great man, and one whom we will never forget.

HANNAH DAVIS is staff writer for The Farmville Herald. She is also editor of The Charlotte Gazette and The Kenbridge-Victoria Dispatch. Her email address is hannah.davis@farmvilleherald.com.