McGloin pays tribute to Ed ‘Buddy’ Henry

May 8, 2010
By

Lynn attorney-at-law Lisa McGloin will deliver the eulogy at the funeral Wednesday morning for legendary Bishop Fenwick softball coach Ed “Buddy” Henry, who died Saturday after a lengthy illness.

McGloin was a member of Mr. Henry’s softball teams at Bishop Fenwick from 1985 to 1988. She later returned to coach on Mr. Henry’s staff from 1989 to 1997, a stretch of unprecedented success that saw Fenwick win seven consecutive Division 1 state championships. She also coached for part of one season on Mr. Henry’s staff at Shawsheen and worked at his Championship Sports Camp.

“He was my mentor, a close family friend for years, and the reason why I coach the way I do,” said McGloin, who has been the highly successful head softball coach at Concord-Carlisle High School since 2000. Her teams have reached the state semifinals four times.

McGloin stayed in touch on a daily basis with Mr. Henry as he fought bravely against his illness. She was the organizer of an event in Mr. Henry’s honor earlier this year at Jimmy’s Allenhurst. More than 100 of his former players attended the event.

McGloin was an outstanding player at Fenwick and went on to play Division 1 college softball at the University of North Carolina, graduating in 1992. She received a law degree from Northeastern University School of Law and has a law practice in Lynn.

“When I graduated from college, Mr. Henry told me I’d make a great teacher and coach,” recalled McGloin. “He tried to encourage me to do that. I said, how about we compromise, I’ll coach. Both he and my father [the late Attorney John McGloin] said the same thing about their respective professions – that when you go into law, you’re teaching people about your case. And you’re teaching young student-athletes about life when you coach.”

McGloin admired the way Mr. Henry handled everything associated with the Fenwick program’s and incomparable success.

“Anyone who knew him knew it wasn’t about the trophies,” said McGloin. “He loved to compete and he loved win, but it wasn’t all about the wins. The principles behind it sometimes were more important than the wins to him. I remember he benched players sometimes on principle even if it were at the expense of losing.”

McGloin said Mr. Henry was a source of an incredible amount of knowledge about softball.

“I have learned more about softball from him as a coach – and about life that most people can learn from anyone,” said McGloin. “He knew so much about the game and he would always share with others. It didn’t matter who you were. He wanted to share and he wanted to help you learn more about what his passion was.”

One example of Mr. Henry’s ability to develop players is former All-Scholastic shortstop Colleen Parker Newbury, who later coached on Mr. Henry’s staff and is now the head coach at St. Mary’s High School.

“I watched Colleen as a player from her freshman year to her senior year and she just took off and improved and thrived on Mr. Henry’s teaching,” said McGloin. “Colleen learned so much from him and she’s become a fabulous coach.”

McGloin said she and Mr. Henry attended the Fenwick-St. Mary’s softball game this season. “It was nice for him to be able to watch two of his former players, Colleen Parker and Emily Day, coaching against Bishop Fenwick at Bishop Fenwick.”

McGloin said Mr. Henry helped her make the right call on one of the most important decisions of her life.

“I owe a ton of my success to him,” said McGloin. “He was the main reason I went to North Carolina. I probably would have picked Villanova if he left it up to me. It was probably the best decision of my life to go to North Carolina.

“He’s left a great legacy. He was an amazing man and a very sincere, kind fellow. He will be greatly missed.”

  • Ellen McGrail Waddill

    What a wonderful tribute – Lisa.

  • Ellen McGrail Waddill

    What a wonderful tribute – Lisa.

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