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John L. Woods

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My father hired Coach Woods in 1957 and was proud of John from the start. As a young boy I always wanted to make coach proud of my work ethics in PE. We used to play PIG from center court in the Stevensville gym before PE class started. Students would often ask him how tall he was and Big John would simply reply 5'20". His memory is Big and seen in a simple tear drop. See you in heaven coach.
Larry L. Stewart "65"

Posted by: Larry L Stewart class of 65 - Lake Worth, FL - Student 57 to 62   Apr 09, 2012

Coach Woods was a big man in so many ways. Coach would always 'get your attention' because of his physical stature and would really capture you with his awareness of what you really are or were. He was one of those educators who just knew what you can do and also knew what you should do to get to the can do. Those qualities are rare in individuals. Those are the qualities that shape ones life. That was Coach Wood's

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Posted by: Robert Stewart LHS Class of '60 - Lawrence, MA - Student   Apr 09, 2012

John's passion as a Principal had a huge impact so on many people. He always
had something to say about how to do things right because he cared so much for Lakeshore students, staff, and community members. His wonderful spirit as an educator was very persuasive and influential on impressionable young administrators. He is a legendary figure in the History of Michigan Association of Secondary School Principals (MASSP) as a Past President and especially at the Chewing Match Conferences at Higgin's

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Posted by: Dave Feenstra - Hudsonville, MI - Friend/Administrator   Apr 09, 2012

I am sorry about the death of Mr. Woods and I pray you will be comforted in the days ahead. I sent the following letter to the newspaper editor today that summarizes my thoughts on Mr. Woods:

Having moved away from Southwestern Michigan over 20 years ago, I appreciate keeping up with what is going on there through the e edition of your newspaper. Today, I was saddened to read the obituary for John Woods, however, it brought back many great

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Posted by: Chuck Hoge - Fargo, ND - student, friend   Apr 09, 2012

Mr. Woods had such a presence in all of our lives at Lakeshore Jr. High and he will truly be missed. Everyone alludes to his great stature but it was more than just his physical size that left an impact. He had an equally warm and giving heart to all of us students. A reassuring word here and there, shooting tips on the basketball court, or hearing his great voice over the loudspeaker during sporting events - he was always there.

Our prayers are with Mr. Woods' family for the loss of such a great man.

Posted by: Megan (Schinkel) Suitor - Lewis Center, OH - Student   Apr 09, 2012

When I was playing basketball at Benton Harbor Jr. High, we played the preliminary games before Lake Michigan Collage. John was the center for the collage and what a great player he was. That year Lake Michigan Collage played in Kansas at the Nationals. John was the leading scorer and most valuable player in the tournament. I always remember how nice John was to our little team of freshmen. He truly was a nice guy!

Posted by: Jim Brow - Baroda, MI   Apr 09, 2012

My father was excited about John the day he hired him. I never wanted to dissapoint John in PE class. Before class we used to play PIG from center court when I was in the eighth grade. He said many times he was 5' 20" tall. You can't help but love the big man with the biggest heart.

Posted by: Larry Stewart - Lake Worth, FL - PE student from 57 to 62   Apr 09, 2012

John Woods was a gentle giant. While pitching in a LHS baseball game, Coach Woods came out to the mound and told Fred and me that if I ever threw that knuckle ball again I would never pitch for LHS again. It was relayed to me in a very soft and gentle voice. In driver education Coach also taught me to parallel park with one simple hint and to this day ever time I parallel park I think of him.

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Posted by: Steve Coleman - Tampa, FL - student, athlete   Apr 09, 2012

Mr. Woods was one of my favorite teachers/educators at Lakeshore. He was a kind and sweet man that was a comfort to me when I came to Lakeshore due to the fact that he so resembled my own Grandfather is size, and kindness. God Bless you Mr. Woods -- You meant a lot to so many people that passed through your school. Deepest condolences to the family - we were all so very lucky to know him.

Posted by: Kimi - Coloma, MI - student/admirer   Apr 09, 2012

I remember Mr. Woods as my junior high science teacher. He made learning fun and he had a warm personality. I extend my sincere condolences to his family.

Posted by: Beth (Fiebich) Foyder - Genesee, MI - student   Apr 09, 2012