Everyone who has played an organized sport remembers a coach. A coach who made them a better player and a better person. A coach who exemplified what he preached to you not only on the field but in life as well. Perseverance, hard work, gratitude, humility.

The number of people who would name Rick Furr as that coach is in the thousands.

Furr passed away Sunday, Jan. 3, 2016. He was 61.

In 2010, Coach Furr was featured on Lubbockonline.com. A lot has happened since 2010, but the struggle has remained the same. Following a liver transplant, Furr flat out refused to die. To quit. He passed that attitude on to the players he coached.

Former LCHS Athlete Kamdon Robinson won a state championship playing for Coach Furr and had this to say about him.

"Rick Furr is one of the greatest men and coaches that I have ever had the privilege to play for and know on a personal and spiritual level," said Robinson. "My heart is heavy today with grief of his passing but I know that his lessons that he taught, not only to me, but many others will live on forever! I love you coach and I will remember you and all you stood for, for the rest of my life!"

Robinson went on to call Furr one of his life's "true heroes." During Robinson's tenure at LCHS, the baseball program had four head coaches. Furr was the one constant; through serious health problems he stuck it out for his team. That gave the team motivation to win state Robinson's senior year in large part for Coach Furr. A motivation that intensified because of Furr's never quit attitude.

As a man who both played for and coached with Rick Furr, Brody Pool has spent a lot of time looking up to "one of the greatest men he's ever known."

"His passion for Lubbock Christian baseball and softball was second to none," said Pool. "However the characteristic I will always remember is the love he had for his players. I and many other people have been blessed by this man."

Those sentiments and countless others are being shared on facebook to remember a man that changed countless lives.

Booster Club President Trent Roberson also remembered the man.

"Rick recognized his calling in life, which is identical to our calling...Love God, Love Others. Most every young person that I know has a story of how Rick impacted their life. He was genuinely interested in others...in a very selfless way," said Roberson. "He instilled confidence in young people (and old people). He spoke truth in a direct and honest way. He made sure that you knew how valuable you were. While weak and functioning with much less energy than the rest of us, Rick got more out of a day than anyone I've ever met."

Not always does a man find exactly what he's meant to be. Rick Furr found that, and he executed his passion perfectly.

Mondy Brewer via Facebook.com
Mondy Brewer via Facebook.com

"He was the type of coach I admire; one who used athletics to inspire athletes to be better people," LCU volleyball coach Jennifer Lawrence said. "His Godly influence reached many and his legacy is in his children and each of the players' lives he changed."

Lubbock Christian School also commented on his passing:

"With great sadness, Lubbock Christian School wishes to offer our sincerest sympathy to the family of Rick Furr, longstanding pillar of LCS and head Lady Eagle Softball Coach. Coach Furr passed from this earth on Sunday, January 3, 2016 to claim his heavenly reward."

Coach Furr began coaching at LCHS in 2002. He'd been a part of Baseball, Softball and Football collecting all of which collected State Championships during that time.

"Nobody represents the values of Lubbock Christian School more than Rick Furr," said Brian Pittaniello, LCS Board of Trustee President. "He taught all of us what it means to serve Jesus Christ - no matter what the circumstances are.  The impact that he made on the lives of our students and our athletes, as well as the entire LCS community, will be lasting."

The value of Rick Furr is undeniable. Not because he was a great coach (which he undoubtedly was), but because of his courage to live. Each year, the Rick Furr Courage Award is given a LCS athlete that best represents the values of Lubbock Christian School in Coach Furr's honor.

The Lights and scoreboard at the Softball field at Lubbock Christian burn in his honor.

Mondy Brewer via Facebook.com
Mondy Brewer via Facebook.com

Rick Furr still has not quit. He never will. His legacy will live on forever. He ran the race. He fought the good fight. He won.

Services for Coach Furr are pending at this time.

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