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Posted: November 29, 2008 5:00 a.m.

YMCA Volunteer of the year named

Former soccer coach chairman for outdoor center

Sam B. Hay III was named the Covington YMCA's 2008 Volunteer of the Year.

For nearly two decades, Hay has volunteered at the Covington Family YMCA. He became involved 17 years ago when his wife, Loucy, a past Covington YMCA volunteer of the year, dragged him to fundraising events. Currently, he is the task force chairman for the Covington YMCA Outdoor Center.

"There is nothing we do at the Y that Sam isn't a part of, said Mike Chism, branch executive director.
Hay was a soccer coach for many years, and enjoyed every minute of it. "I can tell you one thing that is most gratifying," said Hay. "When kids pull on your pant leg and look at you with that million dollar smile, and they say ‘Hey coach.' It really makes you feel like a million dollars. It happens when you least expect it in all kinds of settings."

As a coach Hay said he's seen countless people, not just children, touched in life-changing ways by Y programs and services. That deepened his commitment to the Partner With Youth annual campaign.

"The YMCA's commitment to include all, regardless of ability to pay for programs, make it a vibrant youth development organization," said Sam.

Hay is also heavily involved in the First Presbyterian Church in Covington, Boy Scouts of America, and in an optional sales tax fundraising campaign for Newton County schools. He and his wife live in Oxford with their two children: Sam, 10, and Allie, 6.

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