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Wewa Gator Great, Timmy Strange, passes away

Published: Oct. 11, 2020 at 5:44 PM CDT
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PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG) -This morning Wewahitchka Gator Great, Timmy Strange, passed away peacefully at an area hospital. Timmy was a 1980 graduate of Wewahitchka High School.

Timmy loved to play football, and until the Gators faced off on Graceville’s football field on a Friday night 42 years ago, he was just like any of his teammates, but it was in this game that everything in the life of Timmy Strange, his family, and the Wewahitchka community that he loved so much would be forever changed.

Timmy assumed his position as defensive cornerback, and just before half-time a freak-hit tackle would make him motionless on the field, and leave him paralyzed from his shoulders down. This 1978 heartbreaking accident sent shockwaves throughout Wewahitchka and Gulf County and the surrounding area, but it also served to rally this already-close-knit community. The long days turned into weeks, months, and years, and after all efforts were exhausted, Timmy and his family understood that the paralysis was permanent, and they worked together to give Timmy as much quality of life as possible going forward. As soon as Timmy was able to get in his wheelchair, he returned to school and received his diploma from Wewahitchka High School in 1980. In the years that followed, he seldom missed a game unless he was sick or otherwise unable to attend. Timmy would quickly remind you that the Gators made a comeback to win that game against Graceville 42 years ago.

Timmy never wasted his time asking “why me?” or complaining. He just lived life, and was the embodiment of school and community pride. Not only did he attend games as much as possible, but about 5 years ago when there was a need for a new scoreboard for Gator Field. Timmy became the number one fundraiser for the project and even surpassed his donation goal for a state-of-the-art scoreboard. Unbeknownst to Timmy, while he was raising funds, the new scoreboard would ultimately bear his name.

Flags over Gulf County Schools will fly half-staff this week in honor and memory of him.

Copyright 2020 WJHG. All rights reserved.

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