The Bull Dog Alumni Association honored four of its own Friday night, not just for what they accomplished while high school students in Columbus, but for how they changed the world.
Columbus North High School’s Hall of Fame has four more photos on its honor wall, including:
The city’s most famous motorsports driver, IndyCar and NASCAR champion Tony Stewart.
Former professional football player Dr. Terry R. Schmidt, who now provides dental care to veterans.
Marty Newsom, whose work with the Girls Clubs of America movement improved the lives of countless young women.
The late Duane L. Barrows, whose work as a swim coach and teacher is still remembered around the state.
About 60 people gathered in the North foyer to reminisce about the honorees’ accomplishments and laugh about memories of attending high school on the city’s north side.
Newsom said she was amazed looking at the Columbus North facility and how different a high school it has become since the days she attended Columbus High School and graduated as a member of the Class of 1945.
She drew a large laugh when she took her electric wheelchair to the front of the room to accept her award saying, “I’m sorry I can’t walk. I’ve got two football knees, but I never played.”
Newsom was honored for 41 years of working for the Girls Clubs of America, and for serving on the board of directors that raised $2.2 million to rebuild the local center, Foundation for Youth, in 1997.
Peter King, president of the association, described Newsom as a “true Bull Dog who made the world a better place.”
Coach Barrows’ award was accepted by his niece, Ann Cooney, who remembered him as “a real character,” whose competitiveness and loving nature were second to none.
Barrows coached the Columbus High School swim teams to 116 wins, and won six state championships. Afterward, he coached collegiately at Indiana State University.
His niece said he loved the young athletes he coached, and loved to win.
Barrows was killed in a car accident while traveling from an Indiana State swim meet in Kentucky. A four-year scholarship is given in his name annually to an athlete from Bartholomew Consolidated School Corp.
Schmidt said his return to accept the Hall of Fame award is his first in 15 years. He spent some time visiting the house he grew up in at 2138 California St. and mused that one thing most people probably didn’t know about his time in Columbus was he was the treasurer of his senior class.
Schmidt played in the National Football League for 11 seasons, two for the New Orleans Saints and nine for the Chicago Bears. He drew some chuckles when he mentioned that he now had to wear glasses, hearing aids and compression socks, as he pulled up a trouser leg to show the crowd.
“They are Columbus blue,” he said.
Now dental service chief at Mountain Home Veterans Medical Center in Johnson City, Tennessee, Schmidt talked about his faith and how it has led him to travel on medical/dental trips to Central and South America and Africa to provide dental care to people who have never seen a dentist.
And he introduced his wife, Nancy, talking about her ongoing recovery from ovarian cancer.
“This is my hero, right there,” he said, as he introduced her.
Stewart, who graduated in North’s Class of 1989, couldn’t be at North as he was qualifying Friday night and preparing to race today at the NASCAR Sprint Cup race in Richmond, Virginia. But his mother, Pam Boas, said the driver was surprised and grateful for the honor and hoped to return soon to Columbus, where he maintains a home.
“Columbus North was a big part of helping Tony. The teachers and the staff here were incredibly supportive of his time here,” his mother said.
Boas said she was glad when Tony graduated as she no longer had to call in on Friday mornings saying Stewart wasn’t going to be at school that day because he was not well — when he was actually on his way to a racetrack somewhere around the U.S. to pursue his passion.
Stewart also was honored for his foundation, formed in 2003, which has distributed more than $6.5 million to more than 150 organizations focusing on kids, animals and helping racecar drivers who are injured.
“That foundation is Tony’s heart,” she said. “This is an incredible honor.”
Tony Stewart, Class of 1989, is a racecar driver, team owner, track owner and series owner. His racing accomplishments include:
• The Triple Crown — first driver to win the Sprint, Midget and Silver Crown divisions in the same year (1995)
• IndyCar series champion (1997)
• Three-time NASCAR champion (2002, 2005, 2011)
• Only driver to have won both NASCAR and IndyCar championships.
• Rookie of the Year awards in USAC, Indianapolis 500 and NASCAR Sprint Cup
He is retiring after this year as a NASCAR Sprint Cup driver.
In 2003 he formed the Tony Stewart Foundation, which funds programs that serve chronically ill and physically disabled children, at-risk or endangered animals and drivers injured in the sport of racing. The foundation has awarded more than $6.5 million to more than 150 organizations.
After graduating from Columbus High School, Class of 1946, Duane Barrows earned his bachelor’s degree from Franklin College and his master’s degree from Butler University. He returned to Columbus High School as a teacher, assistant football coach and head boys swim coach. His swim teams won six state championships.
Barrows coached the Indiana State University men’s swimming team from 1966 and 1979, serving as an assistant professor at the university. Barrows taught swimming to people of all ages while developing the Donner Swim Club in Columbus and Terre Haute Aquatic Club in 1971. He was killed in a car accident following a 1979 swim meet.
He earned the Franklin College Alumni Athletic Award for Outstanding Athletic Achievement and was inducted into the Indiana Swimming and Diving Hall of Fame.
Martha May “Marty” Newsom, Class of 1945, earned her bachelor’s degree from Franklin College and her master’s degree from Ohio University.
She spent 41 years working with organizations dedicated to the betterment of girls and women. Newsom was executive director of three different Girls Club of American organizations between 1948 and 1963. She organize the first regional office in Los Angeles from 1965-1966 and became national field services director, headquartered in New York, from 1966 to 1983. From 1983 to 1990, Newsom served as director of service centers in Indianapolis.
Newsom was involved in the fundraising drive for the $2.2 million project in Columbus to rebuild Foundation for Youth in 1997. Former Indiana Gov. Robert Orr honored Newsom with a Sagamore of the Wabash award.
Following his graduation, Class of 1970, Terry Schmidt attended Ball State University, where he became an All-American safety in football and Academic All-American. Schmidt played in the NFL two seasons with the New Orleans Saints and nine with the Chicago Bears. He is in the Indiana Football Hall of Fame.
Schmidt earned a degree at Loyola University’s College of Dental Surgery, which allowed him to serve as dental service chief at Veterans Administration medical centers in four locations, including Johnson City, Tennessee, where he is in his 28th year of providing dental care to United States veterans.
Schmidt also travels to parts of Central America, South America and Africa on annual medical and dental mission trip to provide dental care to the underprivileged residents of those areas.