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Rob Potter | Democrat

Joe Iatauro speaks to the crowd as his wife Missy Iatauro, listens during last Saturday’s ceremony to dedicate the Iatauro Sports Complex at Tri-Valley Central School. The couple has spent more than three decades coaching hundreds of T-V student-athletes in the sports of cross country, indoor track and field and outdoor track and field.

T-V honors Joe and Missy Iatauro with the Iatauro Sports Complex

By Rob Potter
GRAHAMSVILLE — September 24, 2010 — For more than three decades, Coaches Joe Iatauro and Missy Iatauro have guided the boys’ and girls’ cross country, indoor track and field and outdoor track and field teams at Tri-Valley Central School.
Last Saturday, the T-V Central School District and community said “Thank You” to the husband and wife coaching team for their many years of hard work with a dedication ceremony to officially name the school’s football/soccer field and its surrounding track the Iatauro Sports Complex.
Scores of T-V staff members, board of education members, students, alumni and community members attended the ceremony prior to the Homecoming football game between the T-V Bears and the visiting John S. Burke Catholic High School Eagles.
The T-V Women’s Choir, under the direction of Kevin Giroux, sang the national anthem to begin the ceremony.
Superintendent Thomas Palmer then took the microphone and welcomed everyone to the special event.
“Today, we are honoring two people who have dedicated their lives to the Tri-Valley Central School District, Joe and Missy Iatauro,” Palmer said. “Their achievements in their coaching careers are amazing. Joe has coached for 110 consecutive varsity sports seasons and Missy has coached for 96 consecutive varsity sports seasons. Together, Joe and Missy have led their teams to 97 league titles in the Western Sullivan League and the Orange County Interscholastic Athletic Association, 73 Section IX titles and six state championships.”
Palmer noted that the Iatauros were instrumental in having the T-V football/soccer field and track complex built back in 1991.
The sign for the new Iatauro Sports Complex was designed by T-V junior Hailey Kaminski after art teacher Chris McAssey held a contest for students to submit designs for the sign. The T-V Board of Education then chose the winning design.
The sign was facilitated by Grey’s Woodworks of Grahamsville.
Students in the Greenhouse Management and Power Machinery classes taught by Robert Hayes and the Conservation 1 and 2 classes which are team taught by Hayes and Steve Fritz installed the mulch, planted the flowers and installed the stonework for the base under the sign.
When he finished speaking, Palmer asked if anyone else would like to say a few words. Jenny Yager and Cathy Bender both stepped forward to accept Palmer’s offer. Jenny Yager read a letter on behalf of her in-laws, Tom and Jan Yager, who could not attend the ceremony due to a prior commitment. In the letter, the Yagers expressed their heartfelt gratitude for what Joe and Missy Iatauro have done for all of the T-V student-athletes over the past 30-plus years.
Cathy Bender read some words on behalf of her parents, Phil and Carolyn Coombe, who could not attend the dedication because of another engagement. In their message, the Coombes praised and thanked the Iatauros for their hard work and dedication to T-V and its students.
Town of Neversink Councilman Ric Coombe then congratulated the Iatauros on behalf of the entire town board.
When he took the microphone, Joe Iatauro thanked his family members and everyone for coming to the ceremony. He then thanked by name all of the superintendents and high school principals who have worked at T-V since he and Missy began working at the school. He also thanked the Board of Education members, community members, parents and all of the athletes he and Missy have coached.
As he spoke, Joe Iatauro often pointed out a person in the crowd and thanked them by name.
In addition, he noted that one of T-V’s former athletes, Ryan Loughney, who is now a member of the men’s track and field team at Ashland University in Ashland, Ohio, made history this past spring. Loughney won the hammer throw at the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division II championships. In doing so, Loughney became the first T-V alum to win a national title at any college level – NCAA Division I, II and III, National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) or junior college.
“This is one of the best honors a person can receive,” Joe Iatauro said of having the sports complex named in his and Missy’s honor. “Number one is marriage and number two is having kids, but this is right up there in the top five.
“The T-V school has been so good to us over the years,” he added.
Joe Iatauro thanked Ben Knight for doing such a great job of taking care of the soccer/football field and track. He also praised new T-V Athletic Director Derek Adams, who took over that job when he (Iatauro) retired from the position in June.
After the ceremony concluded, Joe and Missy Iatauro made their way through the crowd and stopped to talk with several family members and friends.
“This is a tremendous honor for the Iatauro family,” Joe said.
“This is incredible,” Missy commented. “You want to pinch yourself and ask ‘Is this really happening or is it a dream?’
“We want to thank everyone for this honor,” she continued. “This is such a great school. The community is great, the parents are great and the athletes are great.”

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