Beloved Pascagoula Coach Passes Away After Battle with Cancer

Coach Melinda Mitchell made a huge impact on the Pascagoula community for over 30 years.

As a coach, educator, and administrator, she touched many lives and pushed others to do their best. This weekend, Coach Mitchell lost her battle with cancer, leaving behind a hard working legacy, teaching her students to never to give up. Coach Eric Denmark, a longtime friend and colleague, says, "Her love for sports, her love for kids, I’m trying to live up to that ‘cause I don’t want to let her down."

Mitchell served as the Athletic Director at Resurrection Catholic School in Pascagoula since 2012. When her melanoma returned at the end of the school year last year, it didn’t stop her from taking care of her students. Like many of her students, on the court, she was unstoppable. Maggie Lardon, a student, says, "She was a huge role model for all of us here and she was so dedicated to her work and her family, and even the teachers and students here and will be someone we greatly miss."

Prior to her time at Resurrection, Mitchell was the Athletic Coordinator at Pascagoula High School and had experience coaching everything from soccer to cheerleading. Larry Sission, another student and football player, says, "She loved sports and she loved helping other people. She was a really generous lady and she was a big impact at this school."

Many of the students remember Mitchell and her husband, Randy, a football coach at Resurrection, as being their biggest fans. Blake Porter, another student and varsity quarterback, says, "We played in middle school and she was always at the games, so she would actually have to care to come to the middle school games when she has all the high school stuff to care about, so that was pretty cool."

The football players say they would dedicate each game to the Mitchell family and lay it all out on the field in her honor. Troy Cobb, a student and football player, closes, "We went to the playoffs this year and everything we did, we were doing for her, and our coach would remind us every day and what she was going through, ‘cause her husband, Coach Mitchell, had to leave us to be with her."

Her resilient spirit and legacy lives on as evidenced by the students who honor her memory of her abilities both on and off the playing field.

Categories: Local News, Local Sports, News, Sports

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