From Bob Sawyer long-time Athletic Director at Grimsley:
I have learned this morning that our colleague, Neal Hatcher, died this morning at 2:00 a.m. Thank you for keeping Neal and his family in your thoughts and prayers.
Neal Hatcher followed Bob Sawyer as the AD at Grimsley and before that he had been the head football coach at Asheboro and also the football coach at Glenn High School in Kernersville.
Neal had a son Nick Hatcher that played football at Grimsley and I believe his coach was Jeff Smouse and might have seen one year of action under Barry Stewart.
Everybody knew Neal Hatcher. Nothing fancy about Neal. He nearly always wore that Grimsley blue ball cap and he was also known for his trademark mustache.
Neal was a hard worker and he knew the task of following a legend like Bob Sawyer at a school with the name and tradition of Grimsley would not be easy, but Neal rolled up his sleeves and he went to work.
That’s what I remember most about him. He was a worker first. Mow the field, line the field(under watchful care and eye of Mr. Sawyer), and get the stadium ready for the game.
Neal was a worker, but he loved seeing his son Nick get a chance to play football, the sport Neal loved. Nick was a small kid, but he made his way and gave it his all, and he made his dad proud, on the field and in the classroom.
Neal Hatcher was best known in the educational area for his work in Drivers Education and Physical Education.
You can almost see Neal now with the that blue ball cap on and his trademark mustache blowing in the wind, working his way across the Grimsley campus from his office in the Bob Sawyer Gym, as he heads to the Bob Jamieson Stadium to get ready for another football game. That old AD’s office inside the Bob Sawyer Gym was a real treat too……
My guess is that Neal Hatcher was in his early to mid-50’s and we hope to get more info from Rusty Lee, the AD over at Page, who was gracious enough to send us the note from Mr. Sawyer this morning.
Neal Hatcher died this morning at around 2 a.m. and don’t forget this man. He loved his kids and he could work up a storm……..
R.I.P. Neal Hatcher