Inductees Virgil Boucher, a graduate of Monmouth College, coached at Media and Sparta high schools before joining the Woodruff staff under the late Tommy Correll.
Becoming head coach in 1946, his teams went 102-87-10 for 20 seasons with his undefeated 1955 team outscoring the opponents 285-7 in 10 games and his 1957 team finishing 9-0-1. His teams won six Illini Conference crowns and four City and Greater Peoria titles in an era before the establishment of the Mid-State 10.
His total prep record was 140-107-1 5, earning him a place in the Sports Trail Century win club of the Kendall Co. of Chicago. He is also a member of the Illinois High School Football Coaches Hall of Fame as well as the Monmouth and Woodruff halls of fame.
Retiring from coaching and teaching in 1975, he has since devoted his life to aiding over a dozen senior citizen organizations, and has received a number of prestigious awards for his unselfish service to mankind.
In recognition of his tireless efforts, the Peoria Area Chamber of Commerce presented to Virgil the annual Tom Connor Community Service Award which recognizes those volunteers serving our community without recognition or publicity.
Virgil Boucher, a graduate of Monmouth College, coached at Media and Sparta high schools before joining the Woodruff staff under the late Tommy Correll.
As a man devoted to sports, Mick Donahue contributed an essential (and sometimes underappreciated) service to organized sports in Peoria for decades. His passion for athletics began as a youth as a participant in the Salvation Army Junior League Tournament and Proctor Center Basketball League. At Peoria Manual High School in the early 50’s, he played on the baseball team. After graduating from Manual, he was a player/manager on the LeTourneau-Westinghouse team in the old Industrial League, which was one of the nation’s top amateur sports organizations at the time.
Mick spent much of his life coaching, organizing and officiating youth sports in the area, especially baseball, softball, basketball and volleyball. He volunteered as a coach from 1957-72 for the St. Boniface Mustangs. Additionally he coached numerous Little League and Pony League teams.
Over the next several decades, he volunteered thousands of hours organizing and administering officials for various league play in the community. Beginning in 1972, he supervised adult softball and basketball leagues for the Peoria Park District. He also scheduled officials/umpires for the area’s catholic grade schools as well as many basketball, baseball, and softball games for the Peoria Public Schools. In his over 30 years with the Peoria Park District, Mick trained, assigned, and supervised officials for adult softball games for leagues at Peoria Stadium and Sterling school. He organized a force of volunteer basketball officials for the Prairie State Games.
Even after his passing in 2011, his legacy in sports continued to have a positive impact for a charitable cause. As a tribute and acknowledgement of his decades of dedication to local softball leagues, a Mick Donahue Memorial Tournament was held in August of 2013, on the park district diamonds near Peoria Stadium. Many teams participated and many others, including umpires, volunteered their services. Proceeds from the successful event were donated to the PKD (Polycystic Kidney Disease) Foundation, a disease being fought by his granddaughter. Concurrent with the tournament, a park bench was dedicated near the large diamond near Peoria Stadium. The small plaque affixed to the bench, reads, “In Memory of Mick Donahue for his dedication to softball and the Peoria Park District.”