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Longtime coach John Whitmire dies at age 80

John Whitmire, who coached basketball from the youth leagues to junior high and high school in his hometown for more than 50 years, died Saturday at the age of 80.

JohnWhitmireJohn Whitmire talks to his team in this undated photo.Whitmire, known for his passion on the court and sense of humor off it, coached at the old Edneyville High School for 19 years, from 1965 to 1984, leading the boys varsity team to two conference titles and, in 1973, the district championship, the Yellow Jackets’ best AA finish ever. Earlier, he coached Hendersonville Junior High School boys team. He then served as the county school system’s bus supervisor and trainer for 20 more years, from 1984 to 2004. He got back into coaching as an assistant for North Henderson girls team from 2005 to 2012 and after that joined the East Henderson boys team coaching staff.
Inducted into the Henderson County Education Hall of Fame in 2013, John followed his brothers Boyce “Blondie” and Bill Whitmire into the honorary hall of teachers and coaches. Those three and a fourth brother, Pat Whitmore, all coached in Henderson County schools.
John was one of five sons and a daughter born to Boyce Augustus Whitmire Sr. and Patricia Bean Whitmire. A prominent attorney in town for 50 years, Boyce Whitmire Sr. was elected to the state House and Senate before serving as Hendersonville’s mayor, from 1969 to 1977.
Jackson Funeral Service, which was handling arrangements, said a celebration of John Whitmire’s life would be held at a later time.