Central Ohio Technical College banner ad

Coshocton loses local softball legend

| December 26, 2018

COSHOCTON – For many years, Rodney “Hot Rod” Bowman was a staple at Coshocton Redskins football, basketball, baseball, and softball events. He was also a legend in softball – as a player, as a coach and as a supporter. Bowman passed away Monday, Dec. 17.

Jamie Shample, one of Bowman’s closest friends, said he never saw Bowman play softball, but that he was lucky enough to be coached by him for several years. “I knew him for 40 years. He coached pony league, baseball and softball. Some people didn’t like being coached by him because he yelled at us. It didn’t bother me because I think he yelled because he expected so much from us. He believed in us. He brought Coshocton, River View and Ridgewood players together.”

Shample guessed that between the many teams Bowman coached, more than half of everyone played ball with Bowman over the years. His teams were legendary and visiting teams knew they needed to bring their best games in order to beat Bowman’s team.

“He never missed Redskins games. When the kids of players he coached starting playing ball, he went to as many of their games as he could, too. He really enjoyed watching his nieces and nephews play sports and went to all of their events, too.” said Shample.

“People came from out of the county to play softball with Hot Rod. Once you played for him, you were family. He would do anything for his players and their families.”

Shample said he played ball for Hot Rod for 25 years. “My dad used to talk about watching him play softball. He was really good. His brother, Gary, was always around when he was coaching, too.”

“He was a big supporter of all athletics. He and his brother used to sit in the end zone at football games and yell at the players and coaches. Referees, umpires, coaches – everyone knew him. He said Coshocton coach Wade Lucas was his favorite coach.”

“I heard once that he yelled at Wade during a football game and during half time, Lucas told his players to do something during the second half so Hot Rod would stop yelling at him.”

“He wasn’t afraid of telling people what he thought.”

Category: Adult, Sports

About the Author ()

Comments are closed.