McKeesport graduate, famous Florida high school coach, passes away
Elmer Tremont, a 1948 McKessport graduate who became a coaching legend in Fort Myers, Fla., died Monday. He was 89.
Tremont grew up in Buena Vista, Elizabeth Township and played football for coach Duke Weigle at McKeesport. He went on to kick, punt and play defensive back at Miami.
Tremont coached football, volleyball and boys and girls basketball at Fort Myers High School and Cypress Lake High School in Fort Myers where he amassed 732 victories in all four sports over a 54-year span.
He was considered a coaching icon in Lee County.
Tim Lewis, who played football and basketball for Tremont at Fort Myers, told the Fort Myers News-Press that: “He was a great coach, and he was also a very good friend. He was kind of like a father.
“I was very close to him. I’m going to miss him very much. He did more for Lee County than anybody, boys and girls, because he coached both.”
Lewis said Tremont taught him a lot about life and discipline.
“He had a lot to do with my life,” Lewis said. “He was a mean son of a gun. He kicked me off the basketball team in 1959. My entire sophomore year.
“He did what was right, and I did what was wrong. I don’t remember nothing, but I can remember that.”
Tremont was an outstanding athlete and lettered in four sports at McKeesport. He was a halfback on the football team, played basketball and baseball, and was an outstanding hurdler in track.
“Elmer did a lot of great things for the student-athletes he coached,” said classmate and friend Ron Sandmeyer Sr. “He was a tremendous athlete at McKeesport. He played on some great teams at McKeesport. He was a lot better than me.”
Sandmeyer now lives in Haddonfield, N.J.
Tremont began his coaching career in the 1950s at Fort Myers High after serving for two years as a medic for the U.S. Army in the Korean War.
Cypress Lake named its gymnasium after him in 1996 and rededicated it to him in 2006 when it was rebuilt following its 2004 destruction by Hurricane Charley.
He was inducted into the Lee County School Athletic Conference Hall of Fame in 2013 and the Florida Athletic Coaches Association inducted him into its Hall of Fame in 1984.
Paul Schofield is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Paul by email at [email protected] or via Twitter .