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Remembering Howard

Remembering Howard

6 years, 5 months ago Mike Moyers

Former QHS Basketball Coach celebrates birthday number 95!

When I was a kid attending Quincy High there was one question, when asked, that would cause you to stop whatever nonsense you were up to and get your act together.

That question was: would you like to go to Dewell’s office?

Howard Dewell was Dean of Students at Quincy High.  He was the Long Arm of the Law, the Sultan of Swat and the Demon of Detention.  When you were 16 years old the one guy on the planet you DIDN’T want to get to know was Howard Dewell.

But some of us kind of knew Mr. Dewell already.  But not in that context.

Back in the 60’s Mr. Dewell ran the PUTT-PUTT Golf Course there on the southeast corner of 24th and Spring.  Howard always wore those funny golf hats (but it looks good on you!!) and seemed to be a good mood all the time.  He would personally sign you in and make sure everyone was using a different colored ball.  You can imagine a bunch of 12 year-olds trying to make a round of Putt-Putt last an hour.  But we did. Howard didn’t seem to mind too much.   And if you happened to make a hole in one on number 18 Mr. Dewell was there to cheerfully award you your prize—a pass for your next 18 holes-free.

A former coach at Quincy High shared a Dewell story with me recently.  Seems the young coach was having trouble making his monthly finances work so he approached then athletic director Sherrill Hanks and asked if he had any suggestions.  Hanks said he did.  And a few days later the young coach learned that Hanks had found a member of the QHS staff willing to take in a roommate.   Howard Dewell was that staff member.  The rent reduction more than solved the young coach’s financial dilemma.

During an interview I conducted with Sherrill Hanks in 1992, Hanks told me that one of his biggest supporters upon moving to Quincy was former QHS Head Basketball Coach Howard Dewell.  Hanks said there were a number of things he had to change and issues to overcome in those early days of designing his program but the one guy who was always there to help was Howard Dewell. And to me that says a lot.

I’m sharing these things because Mr. Dewell turns 95 on November 3rd.   His family is asking that you send him a card.  The mailing address is:



Coach Howard Dewell

Illinois Veterans Home

Mark word 1

1707 North 12th St.

Quincy, Illinois 62301

It’s the least we can do for someone who has touched as many lives as Mr. Dewell.


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