In Memory of Coach Ormston
Coach & Cindy Omston Future Track Coach
Donate Here to Coach & Cindy Ormston’s Future Track Coaches Scholarship Fund
William Roger Ormston was the best coach you ever met. He was known for keeping the stats of all the teams for the Drake Relays, and held a permanently reserved seat in front of the judges box. They confirmed all their scores with him before publishing them.
It wasn’t that he was a PhD in math, it was that he so loved the students and their success stories enough to pay attention to each one as if they were the only one on the team.
When we want something to grow and flourish, we pay attention to it. Bill Ormston paid attention to the people he loved and they have grown and flourished because of it.
His track teams and cross country teams went undefeated for 7 seasons in a row. Over 300 of his individual athletes achieved state championships.
It was his dedication to paying attention to those he loved that created the enormous community of winners that surround his life.
In 2001 he was inducted into the Iowa Track Coaches Hall of Fame. But his own success story began long before that. He still holds the personal record for the 440 yard dash and the longest kickoff return in any division 2 football team.
His experience in wrestling was limited, but his talent for paying attention helped him coach Jason Smith and Mike Mann to the Iowa Wrestling Hall of Fame and the National Wrestling Hall of Fame.
Thousands of students passed through his math classes. Bill knew that learning math can be painful as it creates growth in the brain. He knew that succeeding at learning is affected by many parts of a student’s life. And he understood that his job was to make learning math as painless as possible while stimulating the most growth.
He coached a National Math Counts Champion and many of his Math Counts Teams went on to national competitions.
If you were a student or an athlete of Bill Ormston’s, you counted in his book.
While he loved teaching, and substitute taught until he was 82 years old, even though he had retired 12 years earlier, some might say he just didn’t know when to stop. And his students were happy that he continued to inspire them.
His love of people wasn’t limited to his work. Above all, he loved his family and often agreed to activities he might otherwise have avoided. He and Cindy regularly visited their two sons each year on a road trip that took them from one family household to another across the nation. They made it their priority to check in on family often. They attended as many family gatherings as possible and often sat in the stands for athletic events for second generation cousins, nieces and nephews. With both Bill and Cindy being from very large families, there were ample places to visit across the nation.
Bill Ormston knew how to help people reach their own goals. He knew that learning often meant failing first. Yet he didn’t give up on students and was there to support them on their second, third and fourth tries. He showered this love on his family as well.
Bill’s love for his wife of 63 years, Cindy Trost Ormston, was beyond measure. Their shared competitive spirit made them avid card players who regularly spent time with family and friends around a card table. You might think his math degree made him a card shark, but he graciously lost many a hand to those he loved.
He agreed to learn to Square Dance with Cindy, in spite of his dislike of dancing. He grew to love the company and people whom he met at Square Dances across the Midwest. He realized that dancing gave him a new community of people to see achieve their goals.
Bill Ormston may not have understood why his son’s set the goals they did, but he was there to support them in their journey’s. He called them regularly, visited annually and inspired them to be fearless in their journeys. He loved his grandchildren and step-grandchildren with the same focused attention he had for his students and athletes. He knew that each would blossom into their own success story one day.
In all these relatives, athletes, students and grandchildren, you can look around and see the love and attention Bill Ormston had for the things that mattered most to him.
Learning to live without Coach O may be painful. He would find a way to make it easier so others could also do well. We can take his example to continue to help others learn and grow.
His legacy lives on even though he is now gone from us. From his inspiration rose many teachers, and coaches. A Memorial Scholarship has been established at Marshalltown High School for students who aspire to become track coaches and inspire future state champions. To make your donation to the William Roger Ormston Future Track Coaches Memorial Scholarship, please follow the link on the QR code found at the door near the guest book. To make a donation via check, please make your checks out to The William Roger Ormston FTCMS. Checks can be received in the box also located near the guest book.
"I never met Uncle Bill personally. He would mainly contact my mom, Lori Buss or my Grandma, Jackie Reints. I did speak with him on the phone a couple times when he would call to congratulate me on wrestling meets. He would call to get the meet results but usually he already knew how they turned out but just wanted to talk anyway. He was probably my #1 fan. Thank you for thinking of me and considering me for the funds." ~ Chet Buss