Elton Goodwin memorial service Saturday at SK High gym

Elton Goodwin’s memorial service will be Saturday at 11 a.m. at the South Kitsap gym.

The legendary South Kitsap baseball coach died on Thursday. He had successful hip-replacement surgery on Wednesday, and died of a heart attack the next day.

Elton had a history of heart disease, having two stents inserted a few years back.

I still can’t believe Elton Goodwin’s dead. His heart, of all hearts, finally gave out. He was 63.

Almost a year ago, when I was still the sports editor of The Sun, I wrote a Thanksgiving-themed column about sports figures we are thankful for. Elton was on the list. Here’s what I wrote:

Elton Goodwin: Considering how thankful I am to know this guy, I’m jealous of all of his former players who got to spend so much time with him. He’s the best high school coach I’ve ever been around. The unique character who coached South Kitsap to three state baseball titles has been retired since 2003, so it was great to hear his voice when, out of the blue, he called on Wednesday to tell me that he just received his first social security check. Others were getting the same call and Goodwin was belly-laughing the whole way. Junior high players at Sedgwick Junior High are going to be the next lucky ones. Yep, Goodwin’s agreed to assist Kevin Dorsey, a former South player, this spring.

I’m still burning wood that Elton delivered to our house in Illahee. He parked that damn truck and had the thing unloaded before I could get there and give him a hand. He loved that stuff, splitting wood, hauling it, stacking it, burning it.

Kevin Dorsey was among those I talked to for the story about Goodwin’s death that ran in Saturday’s editions of The Sun. I also talked to Eric Canton, who was having a difficult time. He was sitting in the third-base dugout at South’s baseball field when he picked up his cell phone. In case you missed the story, here it is.

And, remember, the memorial for a special guy who meant so much to so many is Saturday, 11 a.m., at the South Kitsap gym.


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