BYFIELD — In honor of his years of dedication to the health and well being of local students, longtime Triton coach and gym teacher Henry Sheldon will be inducted into the school’s Hall of Fame, Triton Regional High School athletic director Sean McInnis said this week.
Sheldon spent his entire professional career working in the Triton school district, starting at the Salisbury Elementary School in 1952 shortly after he graduated from the University of New Hampshire. He later moved to Triton Regional High School, where he spent nearly 40 years teaching and coaching at the school in various capacities.
Over the years, Sheldon served as Triton’s varsity basketball coach, cross-country coach, track and field coach, and the coach of the freshman and middle school football teams. He was also a gym teacher, and even after retiring in 1993, he stayed on at Triton in a volunteer capacity for nearly 20 years, during which time he mentored many of the school’s newer coaches.
“What he meant to the school speaks volumes,” McInnis said. “All the employees, coaches and alumni speak so highly of him and how he’s changed their lives.”
Joe Colbert, who has served as the Triton track and field coach since 2001, called Sheldon a mentor and said he was a huge help when he first took over the program. Colbert said that Sheldon had been the head coach prior to his arrival, and when he took over the plan was for Sheldon to stay on as an assistant for one year, so Colbert could get settled in and eventually hire an assistant of his own.
“So I met him, and he’s this crusty old guy, and I’m kind of rolling my eyes thinking, ‘how is this going to work out,’” Colbert said. “But by the end of the season I asked him to stay. I couldn’t have asked for a better assistant coach.”