March 20, 2018
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Maine high school football coach canned after claims of ‘hate-laden’ taunts

Michael C. York | BDN
Michael C. York | BDN
A Yarmouth High School football player is tackled in this BDN file photo. The mothers of a current Yarmouth player claim a Gray-New Gloucester coach told his players to taunt their son, according to WMTW television and the Portland Press Herald.
By Seth Koenig, BDN Staff

Gray-New Gloucester’s top school official told WMTW television a high school football coach is no longer employed by the district after allegations he told players to taunt an opponent for having two mothers.

Maine School Administrative District 15 Superintendent Craig King told WMTW the district “takes concerns about the safety and security of students very seriously, and does not tolerate threatening or discriminatory behavior.” King told the station that he cannot discuss specific personnel matters, but confirmed varsity football coach Duane Greaton doesn’t work for the district any more.

The Portland Press Herald reported that Lynn and Stephanie Eckersley-Ray, the married mothers of a Yarmouth High School football player, claimed the coach told his players to taunt her son whenever he was tackled by asking him, “Who’s your daddy?”

Several Gray-New Gloucester players told a school official about the coach’s idea before the game, the referees were alerted to listen for the taunts and none were reported during the game itself, WMTW reported.

In a letter to the MSAD 15 superintendent, the Eckersley-Rays wrote that they were “appalled” by the proposed taunt, which they described as “incredibly discriminatory and hate-laden in nature,” the Press Herald reported.

Greaton told WMTW in an email that he wants to tell his side of the story, but has yet to make any public remarks about the situation.

Yarmouth and Gray-New Gloucester both compete in Class C South and Yarmouth won last Friday night’s game, 13-6.

Yarmouth was scheduled to host Freeport on Friday night and Gray-New Gloucester was going to play at Fryeburg Academy on Saturday in regular-season finales.

Both Yarmouth (1-6) and Gray-New Gloucester (0-7) need victories in their final games to advance to the playoffs.

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