Longtime McPherson coach and teacher Doug Gayer died earlier this morning following a long bout with cancer, according to an official post on McPherson High School’s Twitter account.
Gayer coached both boys and girls tennis at MHS, while also serving a long stint as eighth-grade boys basketball coach.
“Doug Gayer touched countless lives as a teacher and coach in the McPherson School district,” McPherson High Athletic Director Shane Backhus said. “He had a Wall of Fame career, was a great teacher, great mentor, great family man and friend. He was respected in the tennis community across the state. I will remember him as always being appreciative of his players, their parents, and the opportunity he had to coach at MHS and MMS. Doug was always professional, and the first to offer advice or thanks. McPherson lost one of our great ones today. Our thoughts are with his wife Tamara, and their family, in this difficult time.”
Gayer was inducted into MHS Wall of Fame in 2016.
He coached the girls tennis team from 1983 to 2011 and the boys team from 1986 to 2013. The Bullpup girls were 5A state champions in 1999 and the boys were the winner in 2003. However, Gayer guided the two MHS teams to a total of 25 Top 3 state finishes.
MHS' boys and girls combined to win 26 league championships and had 13 state doubles champions. Gayer was a four-time Class 5A Coach of the Year, was the 1995 Kansas Girls Coach of the Year and 2003 Kansas Boys Coach of the Year. He also was the Midwest Sectional Coach of the Year in 2004.
Gayer was a graduate of Buhler High School and McPherson College, where he was one of the top basketball and tennis players in the KCAC. He was inducted into the McPherson College Hall of Fame in 2004.
Obituary information will be posted when available.