By Ralphine Major
Several of the players who helped Bob Dagley’s Gibbs Eagles achieve a 31-2 record in 1964-65 played a major role in several games when called upon, though their time to excel actually came the following year. One of those players is Charlie Ballard.
Charlie was one of the juniors on the team. Dagley remembers the player who wore No. 32 that year. “Charlie got most of his shots from his forward position,” Dagley said. “He was accurate with his longer shots from outside and was steady and dependable.” Charlie’s experience on the ‘65 team also helped his team the next year when they gave Coach Dagley another successful season with the Eagles!
Ballard has been married to the former Joanne Hood for 43 years. The couple attend Fairview Baptist Church in the Gibbs Community. He is retired from Alcoa Aluminum Corporation after a career of more than 30 years. Charlie had to travel quite a distance each day to his job, as he and Joanne are long-time residents of the Gibbs Community. I first met the Ballards at The Hair Station in Corryton. I did not realize, however, that Charlie played on the ‘64-65 Eagles’ team until I talked to former Coach Bob Dagley. Ballard is the ninth player featured in the long-running series about the ‘64-65 Gibbs Eagles.
Whether they cheered for the Eagles or their opponents, Focus readers continue to remind me how much they appreciate a look back at a spectacular time in high school sports history—when a small, rural school achieved so much. (This is No. 35 in the series.)