Gene R. McDonald
LINCOLN - Gene Robert McDonald, age 80, of Lincoln died at 5:40 A.M. on April 17, 2011 at Abraham Lincoln Memorial Hospital, Lincoln, Il.
Gene was born on December 12, 1930 in West Frankfort, Il. the son of Leo and Golda Hamilton McDonald. He married Billie Jean (Toni) Thompson August 11, 1957 in Camden, TN. She survives. He is also survived by two sons, Rob (Fawn) McDonald of Murray, Kentucky and Andy (Lisa) McDonald of Lincoln, Il., 5 grandchildren, Amanda, Grant, Rachel, Annalise and Logan.
Services will be Thursday April 21, 2011 at 10:30 A.M., at Fricke-Calvert-Schrader Funeral Home in Lincoln, Il. Visitation will be Wednesday from 4-7 P.M. at the funeral home. Burial will be in New Union Cemetery, Lincoln. In Lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Lincoln Community High School Weight Room fund.
Gene graduated from West Frankfort High School in 1948 and Murray State University in 1952.
He played on three Ohio Valley Conference Champion football teams, being quarterback and team captain his senior season. He served 40 months in the U.S. Navy attaining the rank of Lieutenant. Gene served as a physical training instructor at U.S. Naval Pre-Flight School at Pensacola, FL. He served as graduate assistant coach in the University of Illinois football program from 1956-1957. Gene joined Lincoln Community High School faculty as Physical Education teacher and Asst. football coach for the 1957-58 school year. He compiled an 88-84 record in 20 years as Lincoln's head football coach with the 1975 team going undefeated in the regular season, then losing 8-7 to Griffin in the playoffs. The 1973 and 1975 teams were Big 12 Conference Champions. He was inducted into the Illinois High School Football Coaches Association Hall of Fame on April 3, 1982. He assumed duties of L.C.H.S. Athletic Director for 23 years, during which was the introduction of girl's sports under the federal Title Nine Act. Gene was a member of Lincoln Christian Church, Illinois High School Athletic Directors Association and Illinois High School Football Coaches Association.