About Dennis And Earline Grizzle
Almost 64 years ago in late summer of 1948, a young newlywed couple, Dennis and Earline Grizzle, came to Pettus, Texas. They built a home, and began to teach and coach at Pettus High School.
Dennis became the Coach at Pettus High School right after graduating from college. Prior to his graduating from college, he served 2 ½ years in the army in the South Pacific during WWII. So, now he was very eager to begin his coaching and teaching career. In 1948, in addition to his coaching duties, Coach was a1so a full-time bookkeeping and typing teacher. During the years they were here, he coached football, track and field for 9 years and basketball for 8 years. He never had a losing season in football or basketball.
His football teams, in those 9 years, won 70% of their games. They won or tied for 4 district championships and the 1951 team was undefeated. In a game played in Bobcat Stadium in what is now Texas State University, The Pettus Eagles defeated Round Rock 20-13 to win the Regional Championship. Coach Grizzle was named South Texas Football Coach of the Year by the San Antonio Express News.
During the 8 years that Coach led the basketball team, the team won District 6 times, placed second at Region twice and went to the State Meet twice, losing to Blum 48-47in 1953 and to Big Sandy 73-46 in 1954. Track teams won five district championships. Four boys qualified for State. One student qualified for State UIL in typing. Coach served as High School Principal the second and the tenth year.
During the ten years they spent in Pettus, Earline taught high school English, a course in Speech, also Plane Geometry one year when no one else wanted it, had charge of the library, sponsored the year book, and sponsored the-senior class. Earline had lived in Pettus and in Tuleta as a girl, so she already knew some of the students she would teach. The trick was to get them to quit calling her Earline. No one had that problem about what to call Dennis. He was then, and still is to all of us, simply Coach.
Earline taught at Pettus high school until their daughter Dinah was born, and then she stayed at home with Dinah and with Reagan, their son who was born a little more than two years later. But when Reagan was a year old, Pettus ISD called her back to hold a job for a soldier who was being released in October. She stayed on and taught English in the Junior High School until they left Pettus.
The Grizzles left Pettus in 1958 to be closer to Houston where he was working on his Doctorate. He was Superintendent of Schools in Damon and in Friendswood.
They lived in the Houston area for 9 years, during which time Coach received his Doctor's degree from University of Houston and Earline received her Master's. They moved to Victoria in 1967 when Dennis became the first Executive Director of Region III Education Service Center. He held that position until his retirement 20 years later.
After retirement, Coach took up tennis and won numerous trophies at tournaments, mostly in Texas. He was ranked in the top ten in Texas ¬age brackets for over ten years. He took second in the Senior Olympics Doubles in Baton Rouge in 20002, when his knees gave out and he retired from the sport.
The Grizzles have four grandchildren and one great-grandchild.
The Importance of Scholarships
Why is it important that scholarships be available to high school studnts? I'd like to use my personal experience to answer that question. I was fortunate enough to be the valedictorian of my high school class. The State of Texas gave free first year tuition in any state college or university, so I was able to attend college my first year with only room and board at my dorm. This was an enormous help to my family. Tuition then was not nearly so expensive as now, but neither was income as high. I always knew that I was going to be a teacher, and having that first year paid was a tremendous help.
I didn't need incentive; I had that. But for the student who needs a purpose for making a high grade, the challenge of winning a scholarship might provide that motivation. Getting up at six for a quick review may not be such a chore iF it carries with it the prospect of an A. I delight in the possibility that someone who might not otherwise try college is there because of a scholarship in my name.
The most important reason for me is paying back. My life has been blessed. Dennis and I each never doubted that we would go to college. He had the GI Bill, which was a form of scholarship for returning veterans of WWII. Our children both have advanced degrees, and their children are on track. I feel that we acknowledge our blessings when we help students achieve their educational goals. Some who have not had our opportunities need assistance, both in finance and in encouragement. A scholarship is both. That is why I am pleased to have our names on this scholarhip.
The COACH DENNIS & EARLINE GRIZZLE SCHOLARSHIP FOUNDATION
benefiting Pettus High School students
THE BIRTH OF THE GRIZZLE SCHOLARSHIP FOUNDATION
For several years graduates of Pettus High have met in Beeville to have dinner and share old Pettus stories. Most of us were in the class of 1952-1953 and were proud of our 1951 football season where the EAGLES were the undefeated champions. The all stars of the dinner have always been Coach Dennis and Earline Grizzle.
In the fall of 2010, Mike Rosales, 1952, who lives in Indio, California with his wife Shirley and Wayne Dirks, 1952, who lives in Beeville with his wife Ida got together and set up a dinner at the Beeville Country Club. Attending the dinner were: Joe and Ester Aguirre, 1954, from San Antonio, Kenneth and Joan Bosworth, 1952, from Odom, Wayne Dirks, 1952 and sons, Keith and James, Bob and Dorothy Herrington, 1952, New Braunfels, Bill and Bitti Lakey, 1952, Houston, Dickie and Martha Ann Robertson, 1952, Star Harbor, and Mike and Shirley Rosales. Once again, present were the two people that meant so much not only to all of us but also too many Pettus High School students throughout the years, Coach Dennis and Earline Grizzle. We had a wonderful time reliving fond memories from our school years.
When the dinner was over we all realized that Wayne Dirks, 1952, was the only member of the Beeville Country Club and he was stuck with the bill. Wayne really wanted to pay the bill but we all piled cash on the table or stuck in Wayne's pocket. We all had a great time and Dickie and Martha Ann drove Coach and Earline back to Victoria.
The following day Wayne got around to counting the cash and called and said, "You guys were poor math students; you way over paid the dinner tab." Wayne suggested that we take the overage in cash and fund a Pettus High School Scholarship. The rest is history. Word got out to other Pettus graduates and donations, and pledges began to pour in. We realized that this was something that was absolutely wonderful for Pettus High. In the spring of 2011 the first scholarship was awarded to an outstanding student with Coach Grizzle and Earline in attendance. It was obvious that we should develop Wayne Dirks' idea into a lasting tradition at Pettus High. We formed THE DENNIS AND EARLINE GRIZZLE SCHOLARSHIP FOUNDATION INC. as a charitable Texas corporation. Next we were able to qualify with the Internal Revenue Service as a tax-free 501 (c)(3) corporation.
The following Pettus High School graduates initially all said “COUNT ME IN” and have been involved with the start up of the Coach Dennis and Earline Grizzle Scholarship Foundation. The primary objective of this Foundation will be to offer continuing educational opportunities for Pettus High School graduates
AGUIRRE, JOE & ESTER 1954
ARENAS, VICTORIA AGUIRRE 1956
BOSWORTH, KENNENTH DON & JOAN 1952
CARNAHAN,OLGA PEREZ 1954
CATHEY, EDDIE LEE 1953
DIRKS,WAYNE & IDA 1952
FRANKS, LARRY & BRENDA 1958
HERRINGTON, BOB & DOROTHY 1952
KANAK, TOMMY & BARBARA 1954
LAKEY, BILL & BITTI 1952
MALAER, WAYNE 1954
MASSIE, EARL 1955
McCameron, EDDWARD 1955
PEREZ, OVIDIO & JANIE 1954
RAFAEL GARIBAY 1954
ROBERTSON, DICK & MARTHA ANN 1952
ROSALES, MIKE & SHIRLEY 1952
ROSE, BILLY WAYNE 1956
SANEZ, ESMERALDO 1960
WHITWELL, SYLVIA ANDERSON 1954