Mayor Thurman Bartie surprises Coach Granger with key to the city

Published 6:08 am Friday, December 15, 2023

For Port Arthur, Dec. 14, 2023, holds a greater meaning.

It is now known as “Coach Darrell Granger Day.”

Distinguished Port Arthur Independent School District staff and students gathered in celebration to honor Granger at Memorial 9th Grade Academy.

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Port Arthur Mayor Thurman Bartie surprised the head track and field coach with the key to the city and an official Port Arthur proclamation.

The mayor addressed the youth in the crowd, explaining how much of an impact Granger has made in the lives of others.

“The room would not be large enough if they were to bring in everybody whose life he has touched,” Bartie said.

The honor was bestowed on Granger for his years of tireless dedication to the growth and development of Port Arthur’s athletic youth.

Through the coach’s stewardship, aspiring athletes have gained the empowerment needed to succeed in sports and academically.

Granger has displayed generosity beyond measure by helping students in need during his career. His commendable coaching has brought recognition to Port Arthur.

It is through his coaching of the 4 by 100 meter relay teams that he has received national recognition. Granger has been nominated for numerous coach of the year awards.

Bartie read out the proclamation to Granger before his family, PAISD staff and students in attendance.

“The great city of Port Arthur, Texas, is honored to present you with this proclamation,” he said. “Now thereof I Thurman Bill Bartie, Mayor of the greatest city in the State of Texas, Port Arthur, Texas, due by, hereby, proclaim December 14, 2023, as Coach Darrell Granger Day! I ask all citizens to join me in recognizing this great coach,” Bartie said.

“Granger’s leadership, integrity and commitment to fostering good sportsmanship and athletic development have contributed to the reputation of PAISD’s excellence in the region.”

In gratitude and honor, Granger addressed the crowd and students in attendance.

“This is an amazing day for me,” he said. “Today I am enjoying the celebration for you all because of what you have accomplished. You all have allowed me to be recognized, and that is because of what you have done. So, I thank you all, my players today and the ones that came before you, because they have put Port Arthur where it is today.”

Memorial Head Track and Field Coach Darrell Granger was named one of the Coaches of the Year by the Southeast Texas Coaches Association in 2021.

Granger is going into his 19th season as the head track and field coach at Memorial.

— Written by Nikita Harris