NeveHarms Ray White graduated from Woodruff High School in 1945. He was an All-Conference Guard in football and when his Navy career was over, he played football at Bradley under Coach A. J. Robertson.
Always active in sports, he volunteered and was the head scorekeeper at Bradley from 1955-1983. He also kept score for the Bradley women's basketball team from 1981-1988. Ray also kept score for the IBCA All Star games at Illinois State and Bradley. He was also responsible for the supersectional games at Robertson field house in 1979 and 1980. He also kept score for Peoria Central basketball games and also at the Pekin Holiday Tournament.
If there was a high school basketball game or football game, Ray was there in some capacity. His volunteering continued when he co-founded the Peoria Girls Sport League Softball and Basketball leagues, along with Carol May, last yearís Neve Harms winner.
He coached in Peoria Central's Little League program, and in 1993 Ray was inducted into the Illinois Basketball Coaches Association Hall of Fame as a friend of basketball.
Every quality that Neve Harms had, was exemplified in Ray White's life.
Peoria and the sports world lost one of its finest when Ray was stricken with a fatal heart attack last Thanksgiving night. [written 1998]
Ray is survived by his wife Marge, daughters Patti, Julie, Mary, Annie, and son Mike.
Ray White graduated from Woodruff High School in 1945. He was an All-Conference Guard in football and when his Navy career was over, he played football at Bradley under Coach A. J. Robertson.
Neve Harms Award
The Greater Peoria Sports Hall of Fame Neve Harms Award, formerly the Peoria Advertising and Selling Club's Annual Meritorious Service to Sports Award, was named the Neve Harms Award in 1966 and for a very good reason.
As Director of Proctor Recreation Center, Harms observed the need for all youths to experience participation in sports activities, and not just the few who excelled. He, therefore, adopted a firm policy which assured that all youths would have an opportunity to play in games of the various sports controlled by Proctor Center. This plan met with much success and certainly with acceptance by parents whose children became more interested in sport activities at Proctor and consequently made good use of their free time.
Neve carried through this policy when he was appointed Superintendent of the Peoria City Recreation Department which later became part of the Peoria Park District. In addition, he also developed a system of recognition for all youths so that each young person could feel good about his or her efforts.
This kind of interest in all youths regardless of ability came from a most competitive and outstanding athlete. Neve was a four-sport player at Manual High School and a three-sport letter winner at Bradley University. He was a member of the 1929 Manual High School State Championship Basketball team.
Awards prior to 1981 were offered through the Peoria Advertising Club, rather than the Greater Peoria Sports Hall of Fame. We don't have biographies for these individuals. If anyone would be able to provide the bios that were written by the club at the time of the awards, we would very much appreciate receiving them for posting. We are also missing the Bruce Saurs' bio that was written in the 1991 Greater Peoria Sports Hall of Fame Banquet book, and we would like to receive it also. We are specifically interested in the bios written at the time of the awards, not more or less current. Please contact Rick at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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The first official Board of Directors meeting was held on October 14, 1979. Officers were elected. Early decisions determined that the Hall of Famers would be from the Greater Peoria Area; the name would be The Greater Peoria Sports Hall of Fame; its purpose would be to promote and encourage the many varied sports programs in our area, to share with the area the pride we have in the accomplishments of area athletes, and to honor those men, women and teams contributing to our enjoyment and rich sports history.
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