WYTHEVILLE, Va. – George Wythe High School Athletic Director Rusty Beamer’s retirement was supposed to happen six years ago.
“When I called him and told him I was considering taking the position as principal here in 2014, he said, ‘If you come, I’ll tear up my letter of resignation as the athletic director,’” recalled George Wythe High School principal Dante Lee.
So Beamer tacked on a half dozen more years to work with Lee, but after 40 years at GW, he decided it was time.
“I wanted to come back to the place I graduated from. I’ve been in Wytheville all my life. It’s been a very special place. I’ve had very great memories here,” said Beamer.
With 19 state championships, countless athletic director awards, and Wells Fargo Cups, one thing has made Beamer stand out.
“Dedicated would be the word. I don’t know anyone more dedicated to George Wythe High School than Rusty Beamer," Lee said.
And the dedication wasn’t only in athletics, it was in the classroom as well.
“When you get so long in education, it’s not so much the textbook and so forth that you go through, you have a lot of stories to tell in the classroom,” Beamer said. “Sometimes those stories stick with kids. Like, ‘He’s been through it, I’m going through it now, I think I’ll be alright'. I’ve been very fortunate.”
So while Beamer won’t be roaming the halls everyday in the future, his legacy will forever stay at George Wythe.
“When I think of George Wythe High School, I think of Rusty Beamer,” Lee said. “He is your true Maroon. There is no bigger supporter in Wytheville of George Wythe High School, than Rusty Beamer.”