BREWER, Maine — Professional athletes, College World Series heroes and championship-winning coaches are among the first 10 inductees who will be named to Brewer High School’s Athletic Hall of Fame next fall.
Selected for induction were Danny Coombs, David Farley, Joe Ferris, David Jeffrey, Jeff Lynn, Larry Mahaney, Ken Perrone, Clara Swan, Chad White and Amy Winchester. Mahaney will be honored posthumously.
A 13-member committee, made up of 11 voting members, Brewer High School principal David Wall and superintendent of schools Jay McIntire, considered 25 nominees for induction. That list was narrowed to 14 finalists before 10 were chosen for Brewer’s inaugural Athletic Hall of Fame class.
“This is a project two years in the making,” Brewer athletic administrator Dave Utterback said. “As I’ve become rooted here in the community, one thing that has stood out is how the people here love their Brewer Witches and their history and all of the fine teams and athletes and coaches who have come through.”
The inductees will be honored during a banquet scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 2, along with a halftime ceremony during the football team’s Oct. 3 homecoming game.
Utterback said subsequent hall of fame classes will include five inductees per year. Anyone interested in making a nomination should access the project’s web page at http://www.brewerhs.org/athletics/bhs-hall-of-fame/.
“If someone doesn’t see somebody they think should be on the list, there’s a good chance they weren’t nominated,” he said.
Utterback added that private fundraising efforts are continuing for an interactive Athletic Hall of Fame display at the school. For more information about the display or to make a donation to that effort, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here is the Brewer High School Athletic Hall of Fame Class of 2014:
Danny Coombs (Class of 1960): Named the City of Brewer’s bicentennial athlete in 2012, Coombs starred in basketball, baseball and football for the Witches. He set a three-game Eastern Maine basketball tournament scoring record with 104 points in 1960, a mark that still stands. Coombs attended Seton Hall on a basketball scholarship, then was drafted by baseball’s Houston Colt 45’s in 1962. He went on to spend nine years in the major leagues with Houston and the San Diego Padres.
David Farley (1960): The valedictorian of his senior class, Farley participated in cross-country, basketball and most notably track and field, in which he was a four-time state champion in the mile and half-mile, as well as a state and school record holder in both events. Farley finished second in the mile at the 1959 New England championships and went on to compete at Brown University where he set five freshman records and eight varsity records.
Joe Ferris (1962): Ferris competed in basketball and baseball for the Witches and went on to pitch at the University of Maine, where he was named most outstanding player of the 1964 College World Series. Ferris led the nation with a 9-0 record during his sophomore year at Maine and had a career record of 16-3 for the Black Bears. He opened a law firm in Brewer and continues to practice law and serve the community in numerous roles.
David Jeffrey (1972): A longtime teacher and coach at his alma mater, Jeffrey coached the Witches to eight state championships in indoor track and field as well as 23 Eastern Maine Indoor Track League championships. Since his retirement from coaching, Jeffrey has been active in the advancement of cross-country and indoor and outdoor track statewide as a meet official, as well as through the creation and implementation of Brewer Timing Services.
Jeff Lynn (1988): Lynn was a two-event state champion in swimming during all four years of high school. He was the first swimmer in Penobscot Valley Conference history to break 5 minutes in the 500-yard freestyle, was a three-time “Swimmer of the Meet” at the Class A state championships and was named Class A “Swimmer of the Year” in 1988. Lynn, who still holds four school records, went on to letter in swimming at the University of Maine.
Larry Mahaney: Mahaney was the varsity basketball coach at Brewer from 1956 to 1962 and varsity football coach from 1957 to 1961. He led the Witches to three championship basketball games, winning a regional title in 1960 with a team that included fellow inductees Coombs and Farley. Mahaney also guided Brewer to a state championship in football in 1957.
Ken Perrone: Perrone coached football at Brewer from 1967 to 1973. He led the Witches to Class A state championships 1968 and 1970, with the 1970 team ranked No. 1 in both New England and the Eastern United States and No. 5 nationally. Perrone went on to coach football in Massachusetts at Salem High School and baseball at Salem State University.
Clara Swan (1930): Swan, the valedictorian of her senior class, was an early champion for female athletics at Brewer High School. She played basketball for BHS when that was the only sport offered to girls. By the time she graduated she was considered one of Maine’s best players. She was a three-year captain of the women’s basketball team at Husson College. As a coach, official and administrator, Swan championed the advancement and expansion of opportunities for female athletes through the entire region.
Chad White (1989): White was the first winner of the Maine Gatorade High School Baseball Player of the Year in 1989 and was named first-team All-State in football as a senior at Brewer. He also played on the school’s 1988 Eastern A championship basketball squad. White went on to earn All-America honors in baseball at the University of Maine and was a 1993 draftee of the Houston Astros.
Amy Winchester (1992): Regarded as one of the the greatest female athletes to graduate from Brewer, Winchester lettered in soccer, basketball and track and field. She was a five-time Class A state champion and nine-time Eastern Maine champion in the shot put, discus and javelin — she was the school record holder in all three events. Winchester went on to compete for four years at Dartmouth College where she holds the school record in the shot put. Winchester qualified for the 1996 U.S. Olympic Trials.