Category Archives: Refelections

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Larry Davidson – Holly Harrier Class of 1978

I remember going to see my older sister run track at Holly High School. There was always this guy running around the football field yelling at the Holly athletes as they participated in various events. To be honest, he kind of scared me. All too soon I found out who he was and why he was yelling.  His name was Coach Raffin or Raff, and he yelled because he liked to scare people, at least that’s what I thought. I was only 12 years old at the time, but it wasn’t long before Raff was standing in our family’s living room trying to convince my mom and dad as to why their soon to be freshman should be going to cross country camp. He didn’t yell, and he didn’t win, both highly unusual occurrences. Continue reading Larry Davidson – Holly Harrier Class of 1978

John Buckley – Holly Harrier Class of 1978

By the time I got to Holly High School, Duane Raffin was already a legend. A state title in track under his belt and almost yearly Flint Metro League championship titles in cross country and track. He was also a sage, although we were too young to know it at the time. As the years went by, the memories have faded a little, but the lessons remained firm in our minds and matured within us as we became adults and parents.  We were too young then to absorb all of his wisdom or recognize all of his psychological ploys, but young enough to believe and to dream. “Coach Raff” knew that, too, and he used enthusiasm to drive us all to fulfill our potential. Continue reading John Buckley – Holly Harrier Class of 1978

Bill Ballard – A Letter to Coach Raffin

Dear Coach Raffin:

I’m sorry to hear that you haven’t been well lately. I hope you feel better soon.

I wrote this letter to say thank you for being my coach and for changing the course of my life. Throughout my adult life, I’ve applied the lessons I learned on the track, perseverance, patience, teamwork, compassion, and enthusiasm, to difficult situations. Without having the lessons I learned under your guidance, I would not have been prepared to deal with difficult situations as an adult. Thank you. Continue reading Bill Ballard – A Letter to Coach Raffin

Tom Flanigan – Remarks from Reunion

Welcome and Opening Remarks

  1. Good evening. It is great to see that so many people came tonight to honor Coach Raffin and re-connect with old friends and teammates. My name is Tom Flanigan and I am a graduate of the Class of 1977. As you can see from the program, we are going to start out with Reflections on Raff through the years with a few words from me and then comments from other former athletes starting with the late 1960’s era. Continue reading Tom Flanigan – Remarks from Reunion