Pictured (left to right) are school board member Tom Milbery; superintendent Jim Smith; former school board member Terry Britton; members of Sam Barnhouse's family: Roger Barnhouse (brother), Grant Kibbey (son-in-law), Samantha Barnhouse (daughter), Dr. Lisa Barnhouse (wife) and Will Barnhouse (son); school board member Beverly Rhoads; school board president Bill Myers; school board member Doug Ernst; and school board member Larry Lyons. (HCP Photo/Caitlin Forsha)
Pictured (left to right) are school board member Tom Milbery; superintendent Jim Smith; former school board member Terry Britton; members of Sam Barnhouse's family: Roger Barnhouse (brother), Grant Kibbey (son-in-law), Samantha Barnhouse (daughter), Dr. Lisa Barnhouse (wife) and Will Barnhouse (son); school board member Beverly Rhoads; school board president Bill Myers; school board member Doug Ernst; and school board member Larry Lyons. (HCP Photo/Caitlin Forsha)
Hillsboro City Schools administrators, school board members, teachers and students welcomed the family of the late Sam Barnhouse to a dedication ceremony for the Sam Barnhouse Center on the Hillsboro High School campus on Monday afternoon.

Barnhouse, a longtime Hillsboro educator, passed away Sept. 11, 2016 at the age of 66. During his 35-year career in education, Barnhouse served as a teacher, coach and principal for Hillsboro City Schools. After retiring, he was elected to the Hillsboro City Schools Board of Education and was serving his second term at the time of his death.

The Sam Barnhouse Center is a weight training building for Hillsboro student athletes and also includes a large room for the wrestling program; two locker rooms; and a changing room.

Hillsboro Middle School principal Joe Turner said that nearly 200 students, in sixth through 12th grades, have used the Sam Barnhouse Center since it opened in January.

 


“I spend a lot of time talking about the impact we’ve already seen from this facility on our students,” Turner said.

The ceremony began with an invocation by Hillsboro City Schools Board of Education president Bill Myers. Hillsboro senior class president Luke Gallimore led the crowd in the Pledge of Allegiance. The Hillsboro pep band, under the direction of Kevin Grow, performed the national anthem, followed by the alma mater sung by members of the Hillsboro choir under the direction of David White.

Hillsboro City Schools superintendent Jim Smith introduced Barnhouse’s family, including his wife, Dr. Lisa Barnhouse; son, Will Barnhouse; daughter and son-in-law, Samantha Barnhouse and Grant Kibbey; and brother and sister-in-law, Roger and Tanya Barnhouse.

Also recognized were members of the Hillsboro City Schools Board of Education, including Doug Ernst, Larry Lyons, Tom Milbery, Bill Myers and Beverly Rhoads and former board president (now Highland County commissioner) Terry Britton; Smith’s successor, Tim Davis, who is currently a principal at Hillsboro Elementary; treasurer Ben Teeters; and Smith’s secretary, Jenny Shelton.

Mike Parkinson of architect firm SHP Leading Design, Oliver Roe of contracting firm DER Enterprises and Todd Ford of engineering firm Civil & Environmental Consultants (CEC) were also introduced by Smith and thanked “for a job well done.” Parkinson spoke briefly about the design and construction of the Sam Barnhouse Center.

“It’s just been a very blessed and very great project to work on,” Parkinson said. “It was very fun, honestly, and exciting. It was a great team from start to finish, and I’ve been very honored and blessed to be a part of this project.”

Smith echoed Turner, saying that the students’ reaction to the facility has been “off the charts,” with student-athletes enjoying the state-of-the-art weight training facility. Smith thanked Jarrod Rich and Kevin Fawley for their role in building the weight training program.

“The impact of this great facility, along with the efforts of Mr. Rich and Mr. Fawley, will be the rebirth of athletics here at Hillsboro,” Smith said. “For the first time in years, our athletes are working to get bigger, faster and stronger. We’ve seen this as our kids have used the Barnhouse Center since January. I believe the center will have a dramatic impact on our athletic teams.”

Hillsboro High School athletic director Dave Dietrick said that Hillsboro students “greatly appreciate” the center.

“I have witnessed the benefit on almost a daily basis of this facility,” Dietrick said.

A former wrestling coach himself, Dietrick said the large wrestling room in the center is a huge improvement over the small room the program used in the past. Past and present Hillsboro wrestlers are “excited” about the new room, he said, adding that former wrestlers are also “envious” of the improved facilities. Dietrick thanked past and present wrestling coaches and athletes “who helped make this the proud program that it is today.”

Smith told the Barnhouse family that they have “a lot to be proud of” as he spoke about Barnhouse’s contributions to Hillsboro City Schools.

“This center was a dream of Sam Barnhouse, and he was very supportive of efforts to give our kids first-class facilities,” Smith said. “I know Sam would love seeing what we have here today. There’s a reason why this center is called the Sam Barnhouse Center. There wasn’t a more giving, big-hearted person in Hillsboro. He really gave his entire life, his working career, to Hillsboro schools.”

Dietrick also thanked the Barnhouse family.

“I am blessed to have known Sam in a variety of ways – as a principal, a coworker, football official, board of education member, supporter of athletics and students of Hillsboro and most importantly as a friendship kindled in the genuine sense of care that Sam embodied,” Dietrick said. “Thank you to Sam, Lisa and family. Please know how valuable this place has become to us.”

Before reading a list of numerous members of the community who contributed to the Sam Barnhouse Memorial Fund, Myers addressed the Barnhouse family.

“I just want to say to the family just how much Sam meant to all of us as board members and what he stood for in our district,” Myers said. “The time, the dedication and the selflessness that he had – that’s what makes this so special for us.”

Lisa Barnhouse, accompanied by members of her family, the Hillsboro school board and Hillsboro administrators, led a ceremonial ribbon-cutting. The Hillsboro pep band performed the Hillsboro fight song, with members of the crowd clapping along, followed by “Hang On Sloopy.”

Hillsboro High School principal Jason Snively closed the ceremony with a call to action for Hillsboro students and staff to keep Barnhouse’s legacy alive.

“We’re here to dedicate this building, but the true dedication, as we have all heard today, comes from the individual whose name is above the entryway,” Snively said. “The time, the heart and the soul that he put in the district, is something definitely to be proud of and sets a good example for all of us.

“Our hope as a school district community is when students and staff walk into the doors, with Sam’s name above it, that they will put the same heart and time and soul into all their activities as Sam did. With that effort and the resources we’ve been given, we’ll make the school community proud.”