Roanoke City dedicates River Edge South tennis courts to local legend

ROANOKE,Va. – Carnis Poindexter,known to many as Coach P., is a local tennis legend.

“I call the tennis players my boys because they were like sons to me,” said Poindexter.

Poindexter is best known for winning tennis tournaments, coaching students and helping send young African-American boys to college.

“He is somebody who made an impact on the city of Roanoke, education and sports (by) mentoring young men and woman throughout Roanoke city,” said Jordan Bell, a community worker.

“I'm a believer in giving people flowers while they are still here.”

He received his flowers today from the Star City, which named the tennis courts at River Edge South after him for his contribution to the community.

“I am really honored, especially for the number of people who have come out and honored me the way that they did, both black and white,” Poindexter said.

An emotional Poindexter was surrounded by family and friends at the dedication ceremony.

“What better way to honor him then to name these tennis courts after him? So I went to him. In a typical fashion, Carnis said, 'No not me. Let's name them after somebody else.' But we persisted,” said John Fishwick, an organizer and friend of Poindexter's.

Fishwick hopes the courts will be a tribute to Poindexter for generations to come.