Frady remembered for building tradition at BHS

Bulletin file photo

Burnet CISD board member Robby Robertson presents the Distinguished Former Employee award to Coach Ray Frady in 2017 at the Burnet Chamber of Commerce annual banquet. Frady died Saturday, Feb. 17, at the age of 84. See his obituary here at



By Lew K. Cohn

Managing Editor

Burnet Bulletin

Former Burnet High School athletic director and longtime Camp Longhorn director Ray Frady, a member of the Burnet CISD Hall of Honor, died Saturday, Feb. 17, at the age of 84.

News of Frady's passing was announced at the end of Saturday night's Burnet Chamber of Commerce annual banquet, where Frady had been honored just one year prior with his induction into the BCISD Hall of Honor as a Distinguished Former Employee.

Frady also was a former Burnet Chamber board member for three years and was honored as the community's Outstanding Citizen of the Year in 1974.

“The Burnet CISD family is mourning the loss of Coach Ray Frady,” Superintendent Keith McBurnett said. “Our thoughts and prayers are with his family.”

McBurnett spoke of Frady's impact on Burnet High School while announcing the 2018 Hall of Honor class Saturday night.

“I personally believe it is so important as a school district family to remember the contributions of those that came before us and remember their stories. I think it is especially important for our newer staff members to know the people and history of our district,” McBurnett said.

“For example, last year, Ray Frady was honored as a distinguished former employee, and as many of you know, he spent a number of years as head coach of the Bulldogs. I think it is important that our young coaches know how Coach Frady focused on building a culture of Spirit, Pride and Honor, while also winning a lot of ballgames. Without the Hall of Honor, some of these stories could be lost.”

Turning down an opportunity to become an assistant coach for Darrell Royal at the University of Texas, Frady came to Burnet High School in 1969 after formerly serving as a coach at San Angelo Central High School, where he won a Class 4A state title in 1966 alongside legendary coaches and friends Spike Dykes and Emory Bellard. For years, Frady was a regular participant in the annual Seton Kids Care-A-Van golf tournament hosted by Dykes and Bellard in Burnet.

While at Burnet, where he would serve 10 years as athletic director and head football coach, Frady took over a team that had very little success on the gridiron in the previous five seasons. Although his first team would finish the season winless, Frady built a culture and tradition of winning around the idea of “Spirit, Pride and Honor” and would never again have a losing season as the Bulldogs' head coach. In fact, Burnet has never had a winless season since that 1969 team.

In 1972, Frady's Bulldogs came within a point of winning the district championship and would finish just three points shy of the district title the following season. In 1974, the Bulldogs broke through and claimed a district championship, advancing to the playoffs, where they lost to Cameron in the bi-district round, 14-0.

During Frady's tenure, the Burnet and Bertram school districts consolidated. To help the students become unified as a single school system and to ease this transitional period, Frady worked with John Lopes and Natalie Guenter to change the Burnet High School fight song to the one currently in use.

“His influence was much greater than just athletic successes,” McBurnett said last year during Frady's induction into the Hall of Honor. “He strived to provide support to all students and the community, yet it is out of his character to take any recognition for the work he did or the successes he had.”

Frady would retire from coaching with a 55-44-2 record after the 1978 season to take a fulltime job as camp director for Camp Longhorn, where he had been working every summer since 1952 as a counselor and later director of activities. He served as camp director until his retirement from Camp Longhorn in 2005.

“With that many years under his belt, it would be hard to find anyone who has touched the lives of more children and adults and committed to a career of educating and leading children on a year round basis,” McBurnett said. “Everyone who knows him would describe him as a person who has a love for working with kids and someone whose very high morals and ethics match the way he lives his life through his words and actions, although he may be best known for his quick wit and sarcasm.”

In addition to his work at the school district and with Camp Longhorn, Frady also helped create the youth football league in Burnet and was a long time member of the Kiwanis Club and First United Methodist Church.

Born November 27, 1933, in Tyler, Texas, to Lillian and L.C. Frady, Ray Frady attended the University of Texas, where he met and married the love of his life, Helen, before graduating in 1956. They would remain married for 62 years until his passing.

A memorial service is scheduled for 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 25, at Hill Country Fellowship in Burnet.

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