Cordele Dispatch, Cordele, GA

Local news

January 5, 2013

WCHS ag building named for McCall

Rochelle — ROCHELLE - A gentle giant, a southern gentleman, a man who was passionate about and loved his work. These were all phrases used to describe the late John David McCall.

His family, many friends and Wilcox County school officials gathered Friday afternoon to dedicate the agricultural building at Wilcox County High School in his memory.

The building where he worked for some 20 years of his life has been named the "John David McCall Agricultural Building."

Wilcox Superintendent Steve Smith who conducted the ceremony remembered McCall as a man who "modeled what it was like to be a good father and husband and a great teacher."

McCall reinvigorated a faltering Future Farmers of America program at WCHS, had two national FFA officers in a five-year span of time, and coached students who earned numerous state and regional awards.

Smith said he made several trips with McCall and his students. "He interacted well with his students. They learned because they respected him and knew he cared about them."

McCall, he said, had a quick wit and sense of humor, but was very even-tempered. "He would think we are making too big a fuss here today, but this is small compared to the impact he had on many young people in the community."

Middle School principal Val Sutton who worked closely with McCall said he always wanted to interest eighth graders in agriculture and FFA. During huge meetings with them in the gym, "he would have them in the palm of his hands," she said. She also remembered him sharing his vision for an active FFA with her and asking for her help.

"Rarely do you find people with education running through their blood. Mr. McCall will live on with the impact he made."

Mark McCall and Rachel Becker remembered their dad as a man who cared about them deeply. Fellow agriculture teacher, Allen Ellicott said, "McCall's legacy lives on through his students," and WCHS Athletic Director Donnie Clack said, "I cherish my memories of John David McCall."

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