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Former Ridge Coach Called a Great Dad, Mentor [VIDEO]

Family, players, coaches and friends reflect on life of Harry Bush.

The family and friends of Harry Bush, former teacher and football coach, gathered Saturday afternoon at the Olde Mill Inn to remember the man they knew and loved.

Bush, who was a teacher and coach at Ridge from 1965 to 1988, died last month at the age of 87.

The speakers on Saturday included Bush's children, teachers and coaches, and a few players. There was a strong expression of love, respect and the knowing that they were better for having had him in their lives.

"Coach Bush was a highly regarded football coach and teacher at Ridge," Ridge Athletic Director Rich Shello said prior to the event. "He was known as an offensive innovator and is credited for having developed a quality program over many years at Ridge in the Mountain Valley Conference. Even more significantly, he was very endeared as a mentor to the young men that he coached."

Bernards Township Committee Member John Carpenter last week noted Bush's death, saying even after retiring from Ridge High, the longtime resident remained active in the community. Carpenter said Bush had been a member of the township's Deer Management Advisory Committee.

The Township Committee also had passed a resolution honoring Bush in 2010, following Bush's retirement from the deer management committee as he prepared to move to Maryland.

Carpenter, a Ridge graduate, said Bush "was my coach" when he played football at the high school, and added that the name of Harry Bush was synonymous with football at Ridge High School.

Catherine Hartjen July 01, 2012 at 11:32 AM
Those were truly the coaches who turned boys into men. How lucky they were to have such a true mentor and teacher. Those were the days long ago when if you lost you lost and did not get a trophy for losing. Where did that go.........
Patricia A. Miller (Editor) July 27, 2012 at 04:17 AM
Mr. Bush was not only a great football coach, he was also a terrific teacher. He had a wry sense of humor. In my yearbook he wrote "Good luck in your struggle with the truant officer." RIP Mr. Bush. You were my favorite teacher at Ridge.

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