Robert T. "Bob" Jenkins

Obituary
  • "Sadly, I just learned of coach Bob's death. He was my..."
    - Jim Gros
  • "Although it was good talking to you yesterday for the first..."
    - Yale Zamore
  • "Dear Margaret, Don and I are so very sorry to learn about..."
    - Judy Aplin
  • "The national sports community along with the state of South..."
    - John Hemmer
  • "Bob was a friend of mine, and I had the greatest respect..."
    - Bill Brooker

Coach Robert "Bob" T. Jenkins ROCK HILL Coach Robert "Bob" Thomas Jenkins, 79, of Rock Hill, S.C., died peacefully in his sleep on Monday, April 29, 2013, at Piedmont Medical Center, Rock Hill. Born July 17, 1933, he was the son of Robert Milo Jenkins and Mary Gattis Holland Nefzger. He married Margaret Mallette Henderson Jenkins on Aug. 30, 1958, in Atlanta, Ga. He attended Fork Union Military Academy, Virginia; the University of South Carolina (BA in Education, 1957, Physical Education major); and Winthrop College (MA in Education, 1970, Guidance and Counseling). Bob Jenkins, a two-time national coach of the year, started track and cross-country programs at five different high schools. As of 2005, Jenkins had an overall record of 1021-185 (.847) and had coached seven state championship teams. His longest tenure was at Northwestern High School, where he coached from 1971-95. While there, Jenkins was a fourteen-time regional Track Coach of the Year, ten-time regional Cross Country Coach of the Year, six-time South Carolina Track Coach of the Year, four-time South Carolina Cross Country Coach of the year, National Track Coach of the Year, and National Cross Country Coach of the Year. Jenkins spearheaded the development of cross country in the state of South Carolina, founding the South Carolina Track and Cross Country Association. In recognition of his achievements and contributions, he was selected as a National Team Coach in 1981 and 1982, and in 1997 and 1998, he coached on the U.S. Olympic Development Team. He retired in 1995 but never strayed far from the track, continuing to serve as a frequent contributor at Northwestern High. He is a member of the York County Hall of Fame and was a charter inductee into the South Carolina Athletic Coaches Association Hall of Fame. Jenkins came out of retirement in 2005 for yet another coaching challenge to start the cross-country and track & field programs at South Pointe High School. While he retired again in 2009, he continued to be a presence on and off the track. He was Region Track Coach of the Year in 1973-1975, 1977-1981, 1983, 1986-1989, 1991-1995; Region Cross-Country Coach of the Year in 1973-1980, 1990-1994; South Carolina Track Coach of the Year in 1973-1976, 1983, 1986; South Carolina Cross-Country Coach of the Year in 1973-1974, 1976-1977; National High School Athletic Coaches Association District 3 Coach of the Year in 1974 (Track), 1976 (Track), and 1978 (Cross Country); National High School Athletic Coaches Association National Track Coach of the Year in 1976; National High School Athletic Coaches Association National Cross-Country Coach of the Year in 1978; Team South Coaching Staff Men's Track & Field Team TAC/USA Olympic Sports Festival in 1981; USA National Team Coach in June 1982 (London, England) USA vs. England, Sweden and Australia; Shrine Bowl Run Assistant Coach in 1988; Shrine Bowl Run Head Coach in 1989; United States Track Coaches Association Hall of Fame (First high school track coach to be inducted into USTCA that is the governing body for Track & Field in the U.S.0 in 1996; York County Hall of Fame; Northwestern Hall of Fame; Golden South Track Classic Hall of Fame; S.C. Track and Cross-Country Coaches Association Hall of Fame; and South Carolina Athletic Coaches Association Hall of Fame Charter Member in 1993. He was employed by the following schools: Fishburne Military Academy (1957-1959) as Assistant Football Coach, Head Basketball and Track & CC Coach, and History Instructor (1959-1961), Athletic Director, and Head Football, Basketball, Track & CC Coach; Carlisle Military School (1961-1965) as Athletic Director, Head Football and Track & CC Coach, and Instructor of History, Science, English, and Algebra; York High School (1965-1968) as Athletic Director, Assistant Principal, and Head Football, Track & CC Coach; Rock Hill High School (1968-1971) as Head Coach Track & CC, Assistant Football Coach, and Instructor of Physical Education and Mathematics; Northwestern High School; (1971-1974) as Head Coach Track & CC, Assistant Football Coach, Counselor (1974-1995), Head Coach Track & CC and Counselor; and South Pointe High School (2005-2009) as Head Coach Track & CC. He is survived by his wife of 54 years, Margaret Henderson Jenkins; daughter, Mary Mallette Jenkins Wood and husband, Kevin Wood; grandsons, George Henderson and Robert Andrew Wood of Rock Hill; daughter, Margaret Keller "Meg" Jenkins Locke and husband, Ron Locke; grandsons, William Jenkins and Robert Keller; and granddaughter, Margaret Mallette Locke of Hickory, N.C.; sister-in-law, Keller Henderson Barron and husband, Bill Barron of Columbia, S.C.; nephews, Lewis, George and Charles Bumgardner and families; and niece, Margaret Anne Bumgardner DuBose and family; and his lifelong family of administrators, coaches, athletes and all those he loved and who loved Coach. A private family Liturgy will be held at Our Savior Episcopal Church, Rock Hill on Thursday, May 2, 2013. A Community Worship Service celebrating Coach Jenkins's life will be held at 4 p.m. Thursday, May 2, 2013, at West End Baptist Church, Rock Hill. The family will receive friends after the Coach Jenkins's life celebration. Greene Funeral Home Northwest is in charge of the services. Memorials may be made to Step Up for Yellow Mountain, c/o Yellow Mountain Enterprises, P.O. Box 548, 255 Estatoa Street, Newland, NC 28657.

Published in The State on May 2, 2013
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