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Former Linfield College football player and assistant coach Ron August passed away Saturday, Jan. 28, at Salem Hospital at age 70.
August devoted nearly his entire adult life to coaching football, both at the high school and college levels. He worked 25 years as a teacher and coach in the Dallas School District, his last 19 of which were spent leading the Dragons’ football program.
He went on to serve similar roles at Salem’s McKay High School for seven seasons. As a high school coach, he posted a career win-loss record of 183-75 while leading his teams to 16 straight playoff appearances.
In 1986, August led Dallas to the Oregon Class 3A state championship and was selected as Class 3A Coach of the Year that same season.
He is among a long list of Linfield graduates who have coached high school teams to state championships or college teams to national titles.
In honor of his coaching success, August was selected to serve as head coach of the North team for the 1986 and 1987 Shriners all-star games in Portland and also coached in the 1988 East-West Shriners all-star game in Baker City.
August spent 12 seasons as an assistant coach at Linfield, joining the staff in 1996 under then-head coach Ed Langsdorf. He continued to serve the college during the tenures of Jay Locey and current coach Joseph Smith before retiring following the 2007 season.
At Linfield, he carved an important niche as Linfield’s special teams coordinator, a position seldom served in a full-time capacity at a NCAA Division III school. As a result of day-to-day guidance, Linfield’s special teams statistically ranked among the Northwest Conference and nation’s finest.
A member of Linfield’s 2004 Division III national championship team, August tutored Linfield All-America specialists James Wilson, Brandon Hazenberg and Scott Birkhofer, as well as record-setting kickers Garrett Wales, Scott Cannon, John Dailey and Ryan Cruz.
He joined other members of the coaching staff and former players last September when Linfield’s 2004 team (along with the 1982, ’84 and ’86 teams) was inducted into the Oregon Sports Hall of Fame.
Though retired from coaching, August continued to attend as many Linfield football games as his health permitted. His association with the college spanned more than 50 years.
As a Linfield student, August participated in football under Hall of Fame coach Paul Durham, though injuries prevented him from earning a varsity letter.
August was beloved by his former players and fellow members of the coaching staff. He was known for his polished skills as a joke teller and team prankster.
He is survived by his wife, Betty; three daughters, Denise, Dana and Dyan; and numerous grandchildren.
A Celebration of Life is scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 18, at 1 p.m. at the Dallas High School Gymnasium.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Dallas Booster Club in care of Dallas Mortuary Tribute Center.
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