Gary Childress, the longtime boys basketball coach who notched his 500th career win last December, is retiring.
He has been coaching for 37 years, most recently at Vista PEAK for the last three. Childress also coached at Limon, Yuma, in Washington state, Palisade and Grandview.
"What an incredible three years he has given us at VP," Vista PEAK athletic director Mike Hughes wrote in an email to CHSAANow.com on Friday evening. "People of Gary's values and character don't come along very often and we were blessed to have him provide his leadership at VP. Gary's impact on our student-athletes and our coaching staff is profound.
"Although the InsideOut Initiative is something relatively new to our CHSAA membership, Gary has been coaching and leading young people with the very principles that the concepts of Joe and Jody's message teaches for over 30 years," Hughes added. "His impact on high school basketball in Colorado, and more importantly on the lives of the student-athletes he coached, is legendary. We will miss him and his presence at Vista PEAK dearly."
In his career, Childress was 512-319. His 512 wins are the ninth-most in state history for a boys basketball coach.
At Vista PEAK, Childress led the Bison to a 57-17 mark in three seasons. They reached the Class 4A state tournament each year, and made the Sweet 16 the past two seasons.
Prior to that, Childress spent 16 years as the boys basketball coach at Grandview, where his teams went 215-165.
He spent five years coaching Palisade from 1991-96, nine in Yuma (1981-90), and got his start with two seasons in Limon (1979-81). In between were two years leading Ferndale, Wash., and another as a college assistant.