Warren Gordon Crutchfield (Crutch) was born on October 29, 1936 in Washington, DC to the late Mary Frances and Henry Whitmore Crutchfield, who preceded him in death. He was raised and lived in Rockville, Maryland all of his life. He graduated from Carver High School in 1952, the only black high school in Montgomery County at that time. After graduation, he attended West Virginia State University. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Physical Education and a minor in Sociology from the University of Maryland Eastern Shore - UMES (formerly known as Maryland State). While attending college, he played football and ran track and later was inducted into the UMES Hall of Fame for his success on the track. After graduation, he went into the Army and served four years in the Medical Core. He married Brenda Washington after returning from the Army in August of 1964 and had two beautiful daughters, La Shane Danielle and Nicole LaTara..
Once he left the Army, he was hired by Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) as an elementary school physical education teacher. For 30 years, Sherwood High School was his home as a teacher, mentor, coach and friend. He started his basketball coaching career as an assistant boys basketball coach at Sherwood and Blair High Schools. His career at Sherwood included boys and girls’ basketball, cross country and track teams. Some of his accomplishments at Sherwood were: Teacher of the Year, first teacher in MCPS to speak at a high school graduation, girls basketball and track coach of the year, the Mann Award from the Montgomery Journal newspaper for Outstanding Educator of the Year, Grand Marshal in the Olney parade, Olney Citizen of the Year, and was inducted into the Sherwood Athletics Hall of Fame.
While Olney community is where he worked, the City of Rockville was his home In the late 60’s, Warren served on the Human Relations Commission, which oversaw the relationships of minorities within the city. He was an active member at Jerusalem Mt. Pleasant United Methodist Church and the Lincoln Park Hall of Fame Committee (where he is inducted as well). He was recognized by the City of Rockville for the Good Neighbor Award and in 2017 Montgomery County Award for Historic Preservation for Rockville’s Haiti Cemetery. In June 2019, he was recognized by Montgomery County as a Living Legend for his work in education.
After retiring from MCPS he continued to coach basketball and track at different private schools. He started at The Barrie School and went on to at The Bullis School. From there he went to coach girls basketball at Pallotti High School in Laurel. The following three years coaching girls basketball at The Academy of the Holy Cross. He ended his coaching and teaching career at Sidwell Friends where he coached track and taught a Physical Education class. Through coaching, Crutch has affected and influenced the lives of many others.
Even though he was a successful basketball coach, track was actually Crutch’s first love. His nickname in college and still to this day is “Flash.” He held several records at UMES. He joined local track clubs and participated in the Masters competitions. While participating with the Masters, he traveled to Germany with his daughters in tow, Puerto Rico and other cities to compete.
During his free time, Crutch could be found walking in the City of Rockville, tending to his lawn or at his small garden located at the Rockville Senior Center. He also loved to spend time with family, extended family and many friends and former students and participating in the many local committees.
Nothing made him prouder than watching the successes of his daughters, La Shane and Nicole. Frequently, he would support former students and coaches by attending their events without them knowing. He also supported local women's athletic teams such as the University of Maryland Women's Basketball and the Washington Mystics. Crutch loved that he was born in Maryland and followed all Maryland based teams such as the United States Naval Academy and the Baltimore Ravens. He was also known for his words of encouragement before practice and would frequently write inspiring words.
Gordon is survived by his loving wife of 54 years, Brenda; his daughters, La Shane and Nicole Crutchfield. He also leaves his sister, Elaine Crutchfield; his mother-in-law, Madeline Washington; and sister-in-law, Joanne Crutchfield; brother-in-law, George Riggs. Additionally, his nephews, Wellington - Buddy Jr - (Gretchen), Keith (Winessa), Mark (Tonya), and David (Monique) Crutchfield and nieces, Kerri Allen (Andre), Kelley Faison (Reginald Sr), Leslie Tiller (Christopher), Katherine Harriday and Charlotte Crutchfield. He also leaves a host of dedicated great nephews, nieces and friends as well. He also leaves his brothers from another mother, William Burriss, Sr., Clarence Hebron, and Jesse Johnson.
He was preceded in death by his older brother, Wellington Sr. (Big Buddy), sister-in-law Maxine Riggs and nephew, Daryl Crutchfield.
Donations can be made in his honor to the Haiti Cemetery Association at www.HaitiCemetery.org
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