The town and school, still feeling the blow of the sudden death of former coach Keith Howard during the first game of the season in 2009, ushered in the Dampeer era with a cookout Tuesday at the fieldhouse. Both Principal Terry Roller and Dampeer himself paid tribute to Howard’s legacy, and Dampeer voiced his gratitude that Howard’s mother attended.
It is a difficult role that Dampeer has taken on. He not only has to fill the shoes of a beloved nine-season veteran at the school, he must also resuscitate Howard’s momentum and reverse the losses of last season.
He trod lightly in his introduction to the team and the town, recognizing the barely controlled emotions that hang over the football program, and he began the process with a pronouncement that everyone cheered:
“There is no reason we can’t win right now.”
We add our welcome to Lincoln’s. Coach Dampeer appears to be just what this team needs.