NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Legendary Tennessee State University coach Ed Temple, who brought the schools name to the world’s stage with 40 Olympians, was remembered Friday in a memorial service for “a life well-lived, and a race well won.”
With many members of his teams called the Tigerbelles in attendance, Coach Temple’s enduring legacy was honored not just for the track triumphs, but for his insistence and success that all of his athletes–including the Olympians–completed their academic degrees.
“He loved his school and he loved representing the United States,” said Temple’s daughter Edwina.
TSU’s 1960 Olympic long jump champion Ralph Boston was among those presiding at the service on the school’s campus.
The service drew Governor Bill Haslam and Nashville Mayor Megan Barry, along with hundreds of those who lives were touched by Temple long after he left coaching.
Maya Ramsey is a current Tigerbelle whose family told her she would have high standards to live by on and off the track set by Coach Temple decades earlier.
Cathy Bender served with Temple for nearly 20 years on the Metro Sports Authority.
“We always looked to him when we were making tough decisions and he was a champion to end for TSU,” Bender said.
Temple died last Thursday night at the age of 89.
He served as the head coach of the U.S. Women’s Olympic Track Teams in 1960 and 1964 and led TSU’S famed Tigerbelles to 23 Olympic medals.