|Title:||Class of 2009|
Grace Flynn served as the secretary to the Athletic Department from 1982-99. Previously to her employment at Worcester State College, she had worked for ten years for the Town of Oxford School Department.
Flynn started off working alongside of Robert Devlin, the Director of Athletics, from 1982-88. The department at the time consisted of two desks, a single line phone and a Wang computer that very quickly became obsolete because it had not been hooked up for an entire year. Flynn helped make athletics part of the college as she coordinated communications, wrote out meal checks and took care of anything else that needed to be done.
Each season brought in different coaches with various needs and wants. One of Flynn's first encounters with a coach was when he sat down at Devlin's desk and put his feet on the top when Devlin wasn't there one day. The coach told her that he care where he placed his feet even if Devlin wasn't around. Flynn then told him in a very stern tone to put his feet down and he quickly did just that. It was then that her legendary status as an athletic secretary was formed; she made sure it never happened again!
When Sue Chapman became the Athletic Director in 1988, the one room office soon became a two room office and the one-line phone soon came with multiple lines. Renovations included cubicles for the full-time coaches along with a separate office for the Athletic Director.
Over the course of her tenure as the department secretary she had the pleasure of working with Hall of Fame coaches John "Doc" Coughlin the senior equipment manager, athletic trainers Oscar Larsson and John Schaper, Bruce Baker the sports information director along with current coaches Brien Cullen, Karen Tessmer, Dave Lindberg and Dirk Baker and many other great Worcester State coaches.
Flynn attended every athletic event she could on and off campus. Whether it was rain or shine, and when it was hot or cold out, she ran a concession stand at the men's and women's basketball home games as well as for football games. She started it all with an eight foot table and an umbrella selling hot dogs, popcorn and candy with the help of some of the student athletes on campus before eventually moving to a wooden indoor concession stand. She helped them raise funds for non-budgeted items such as money for a sports awards banquet or team apparel and gear.
During the Christmas holidays Flynn would bring students home with her to decorate a Christmas tree at her house to help keep them from being homesick. Very often parents would reach out and thank her for her concern.
Upon Flynn's retirement for 17 years of dedication to the Athletic Department the Worcester State Football team presented her with a number one fan plaque which read "In appreciate for your support of Worcester State Football." She also received another plaque from Athletics for her "devoted time and effort." While tending to her duties as secretary Flynn also served on the campus ministry board with Father Roland Chenier and helped out with the Special Olympics.
Flynn currently lives in North Oxford, MA and she is still an active community volunteer. Very recently Flynn was selected to receive the "Oxford Lions Annual Volunteer Award." She is very thankful for all of the coaches who gave her the spirit, encouragement and confidence to do all the things she did for the Worcester State Athletics Department.
It is with great pleasure that we induct Grace Flynn, as a contributor, into the Worcester State College Atletics Hall of Fame.