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Padecky: For Gary Galloway, shaping young men is finest reward

  • St. Vincent de Paul's head coach Gary Galloway talks to his team during the game held at St. Vincent de Paul High School in Petaluma, Nov. 21, 2009.

PETALUMA

In searching Monday for the right response, John Walker, principal of St. Vincent High School, went historical and found the answer in South Dakota.

"If we had a Mount Rushmore on campus," Walker said, "Gary's face would be on it."

Galloway Coaches SVHS to 200th Win

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Gary Galloway's mug in granite, now there's an image. Strong and solid, chiseled and eternal, a face that's been around here so long, the man behind it is a backstory known to both the young and to the old. Nine kids who are playing football for him this season, their fathers played for Galloway.

"I understand there's a fifth-grader coming up that ..." Galloway paused for the notion to sink in, "will be a grandkid of someone I coached."

Yes, a backstory, that's Galloway, 61. His is a backstory that serves this sentence well: Everyone would like to leave an imprint before their time is done. No one wants to be a vapor in the mist, a fleeting presence gone while still around. To be known, to be remembered, to be a face on Mt. St. Vincent, that takes some effort.

It takes this kind of effort.

The kind of effort you might find hard to believe. I know I did.

Galloway is in his 30th year as St. Vincent's football coach. OK. Fine.

Last Saturday he won his 200th game. OK. Great. Not everyone does that. Now for the punch line.


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