When they opened Reagan they got teachers from all over to come including
a lot of Austin High and University Jr. High coaches like Raven and Glen Swenson. Coach Swenson was my favorite coach
because of his personality... I can still see him getting into his blue stepside Chevy truck in the parking lot. Coach
Swenson went on to Assistant Coach at UT and died in a one-car accident years later and the Texas Longhorns have established a foundation in his honor.
Not Without Honor no matter where we are.
I used to affectionately
call Coach Swenson "Bozo" because of his big round bald Charlie Brown-looking head.
Just for the sake of background, Coach Raven went on to be the AISD Athletic
Director before retiring and died in 2004 although it doesn't seem like 3 years since he passed away to me. Coach
Raven often called me "James" because he coached my brother at Austin High and associated me with him. I didn't
mind because I knew it was a compliment.
I miss ALL my old friends and
I always treasure the ones that proved to be real. Thankfully these coaches I refer fall into both categories.
Austin John H. Reagan High School opened its doors the
2nd semester of the 1965 school year and remarkably started a run on state championships in football that ended
4 years later when I graduated in 1971. It was such a feat that they erected a sign on the side of the gymnasium for
averyone on Highway 290 to see: State Champions 1967, 1968, 1970. We were and always will be proud, going undefeated the first 2 titles and losing one early game in 1970, 13-10. In 1969 we
didn't make the playoffs with 2 losses, one 27-7 to Austin High. We drubbed them 52-13 in 1970 to ease the pain.
Austin High was our arch-rival in every sport.
I didn't play football but I went to all the games and rooted for
our Raiders. The colors were powder blue and white and our motto was Not Without Honor. 36 years later, is that
motto an oxymoron? Why didn't they just coin it as "WITH HONOR"?