Miamisburg Hall of Fame nomination - Barry Ward
In the mid 1970’s, Miamisburg was known as a fantastic high jumping school. That is because of Barry Ward. He amazingly improved by a foot from his sophomore year to his junior year, and began winning all sorts of accolades. How has the Hall of Fame of Miamisburg missed him? Could it be because MHS was not in a league then, where he would have undoubtedly been a two time champion? Could it be because he played trumpet in the high school band in the fall (an instrument he still plays today in city functions) and track was his only sport? Could it be because Barry is simply a quiet unassuming guy who did his job and went about his business not wanting to toot his own horn (except when in the Miamisburg Civic band)? I do not have the answer. All I know is that I have been telling people about him for several years and have yet to see him recognized for his great accomplishments. This is a man who placed in the state track meet not just once but twice, in 1974 and 1975. For some reason the school record books have missed his second state placing. He was district champion for two years in a row. He placed in the top four of two regional championships to move onto the state meet. And if one looks at the all-time best marks in the high jump at Harmon Field, his name is at the top and listed there numerous times. Who knows how many other stadium records he broke? We do know he broke a solid MHS high jump record five times. Five times!!! And his 6-7 mark from his 1975 senior year is still the school record these 40 some years later. Think of those words - SOME 40 YEARS LATER!!! But Barry would not be the one to tell anyone else that. It has taken some work, but I have finally have some more information about his years after Miamisburg. He was a varsity letterman for three years at Western Kentucky University. In 1977 he placed in the Ohio Valley Conference championships in the high jump and improved his personal record to 6-8. Then, when most people are settling in to middle age, Barry put his spikes on for several years in masters age group meets to make the All-American standard for his age. The biggest moment of this era came when he went to the nationals in Iowa and placed fourth overall, beating many jumpers who had been in the Olympic Trials years before. My name is Mike Hout and it is my honor to toot the horn for Barry Ward, one of the all time great people to graduate from Miamisburg and still the all time greatest high jumper in school history.