Friday, January 20, 2012

The passing of a Linfield Great: Dr. Norm Goss (1923-2012)

Photo Courtesy of Linfield Athletics
This past Wednesday, Linfield Sports, passed along the news that Dr. Norman Goss passed away earlier that day at the age of 88. Norm suffered a stroke the previous weekend and was taken to Oregon Health Sciences University. Linfield Sports said it perfectly that Norm was a fixture of Linfield athletics for the past 50 years. Norm was a rock for the athletic department for so many years as the football and basketball programs' timekeeper. He was someone the department could always count on to support and help out the programs because of his love for Linfield.

I didn't have a personal relationship with Norm but each season at home games when I ran into Norm we would chat about the 'Cats. Every time I would walk away from those too brief of conversations my first thought would be "I hope I'm able to be a part of this for as long as Norm has." I have such great respect for what Norm was doing for the football program. Season after season, Norm was able to serve an institution that he loved greatly. Dr. Norman Goss is at the very core of what makes Linfield so very special to so many. It's not just the wins, big plays, facilities, traditions, etc. It's the people and our shared love to pitch-in and try to provide our small contributions to make the very best environment for the Linfield student-athletes.

Tom McFadden is one of these great Wildcats that had the honor of spending countless hours with Norm in press boxes and score tables. Tom was gracious enough to share some thoughts about a man and Wildcat that will truly be missed.

To our Wildcat family:

We have lost the example of what I can only hope to be when it comes to
service to Linfield athletics. Norm sat next to me for 23 seasons in
basketball and down the aisle in the press box from me at Linfield
football. And in that time, we not only shared our service time, but we
traveled together often to football and basketball games on the road. And
those weren't exactly trips to George Fox...we went to Eastern Oregon
University, Pacific Lutheran....even a trip up to Simon Fraser back in our
CFA days....and many of the shorter trips.

And during those trips, I can never recall him being critical of anyone at
the College, its' coaches or student athletes. It was always about the
game. I can only hope to match his love of the Linfield College, the
student athletes who wear the cardinal and purple and the coaches who
guide them. We will not have anyone quite like this man again.

-Tom McFadden
Left-to-Right: Adriana Sleigh (Norm's granddaughter and shot clock operator), Norm,
Tom McFadden, and Ronald Berg (public address).

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