Lees-McRae College’s living legend, Coach Fred I. Dickerson, turns 100-years-old Friday, May 6.
Born May 6, 1911 (the same year Banner Elk was incorporated and Avery County was formed), he graduated from LMC in 1931, the first class to graduate from LMC as a junior college. He was one of 13 graduates.
While at Lees-McRae, he was quarterback of the first LMC football team and he scored the first touchdown ever scored by an LMC player on an 83 yard run on the kick-off.
He was married to the late Doris Busby Dickerson ’31H in 1944 until her death in spring 2010. They had three children.
The Fred I. Dickerson Athletics Complex at Lees-McRae is named for him and the dedication of the Fred I. Dickerson Athletics Hall of Fame was October 7, 2000.
Fred I. Dickerson attended Davidson College after graduation from Lees-McRae. He participated in all sports sponsored by the college during his undergraduate days and went on to participate in football, basketball, and track at Davidson College where he was awarded the school’s Decathlon and Sigma Delta Psi national Athletic Fraternity trophies.
His professional experience spans some 43 years and includes: Athletic and Physical Education director at Lees-McRae (1933-1936); Coach and Assistant Director of Physical Education at Mars Hill Junior College (1936-41); Director of Athletics and Physical Education at Davis and Elkins College (1941-42); Lt. Commander, US Naval Aviation Cadet Training Program (1942-46); Director of Athletics and Physical Education at Lees-McRae (1946-1962); and Principal of Mars Hill High School (1962-1976).
Dickerson has been active in many clubs and organizations including: Boy Scouts of America (Eagle Scout and Scoutmaster); Presbyterian Church (Elder and Deacon); US Naval Reserve; National Education Association; NC Association of Educators; Lions Club; Civitan Club; and the National Association of Basketball players. Dickerson is a member of the [original] Lees-McRae Hall of Fame and has been named “Outstanding Alumnus” twice.
If you would like to send Coach Dickerson a birthday card, please contact Michelle Vance Scott in the Advancement Office at (828) 898-2489.