Johnston Co. supporters ask why 'Coach Mac' is gone - WNCN: News, Weather

Johnston Co. supporters ask why 'Coach Mac' is gone

By Annette Newell

Students and parents want answers about a local teacher and coach.

Johnston County Schools put James McNamara on administrative leave with pay since March 7th.

At Corinth Holders High School, the history teacher and wrestling coach's supporters met Sunday night.

Wrestling teammates chanted in unison. "I believe in setting example goals and working with dedication."

Those are important words to them, learned from their "Coach Mac."

Wrestler Charlie Gray said, "He was a really good coach, he won the conference championship, and last year we came in second, and as a person he was just a great guy."

Tyler Sigler, an 11th grader and wrestler, said, "He changed our lives in a lot of ways. He was just an awesome person, just an outstanding coach."

Wrestling team members, parents, teachers and students want to know why the school district has taken the coach and history teacher off the job.

They wear special pins with the teacher's picture, and decorate cars to show their support. They've started a Facebook page, website and petition.

Mike Holly, the father of a wrestler, said, "It says a lot about the man's character for everybody to turn out like this. He's affected my son."

The Johnston Sheriff's Department confirmed there is an investigation underway about the coach and teacher. But no charges have been filed.

Bruce Gray, the father of a wrestling team member, said, "This is just one of the people that you're not going to believe it of, because it just doesn't, it just doesn't ring true."

Parents say they're worried that what happened to him could happen to others.

Van Lewis, another wrestler's father, said, "Any student at any point in time can say, 'Hey, I'm getting an E, if I make a threat to the school teacher or to this coach or maybe to even a janitor who knows, anybody, anybody in the school system, then who's to say that they're going to get pushed out too."

Families say they're not getting answers, so they're hoping their show of support will bring their coach back.

The wrestling teammates chanted, "I believe in the ability to adapt to and overcome adverse situations. I believe!" Their parents and classmates applauded.

NBC-17 has reached out to members of the Johnston County School Board but have not heard back from them.


Some parents say they've gotten responses from school board members, but only telling them that there's a confidential personnel review of concerns underway.




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