By Ron Rop

NORTON SHORES — As a longtime teacher, coach and administrator, Mike Mack has crossed paths with countless people in his 40 years on the job.

Mack was awarded the Greater Muskegon Athletic Association’s Service Award on Friday night just prior to the start of the track meet at Mona Shores. He was presented a plaque commemorating the achievement by Shores athletic director Todd Conrad.

And Mack has a little secret he’d like to share regarding his award.

“Years and years ago – and this is how old I am getting – I won it at Oakridge,” Mack said. “By now, they’re all dead or all gone.”

Mona Shores Athletic Director Todd Conrad presents an award of appreciation to Mike Mack for his dedicated service to Greater Muskegon Athletics. Photo/Eric Sturr

Regardless, if it’s the first time or not, Mack is most deserving of an award that signifies his love for Mona Shores, his love for the community and his love for involvement in many sports throughout the area.

“This is special because it’s at Mona Shores and it’s my home and always been my home and always will be,” said Mack, who is now the Events Manager for the Sailors. “I was fortunate after I retired that I stayed and helped out. I’ve worked for a lot of ADs.

“All of them have been great and I now have a lifelong relationship with them,” said Mack, 74. “We meet once a week and talk about what we’re going to do.”

Besides teaching, Mack was a successful girls’ basketball coach for the Sailors. In 11 years, his teams won five conference titles, four district titles and two regional trophies. He also coached the boys varsity team for several years.

“It’s been great, coaching was great and it’s a great place to work,” said Mack. “It’s a great place to live and the whole thing has been special with special people and not everyone can say that about their job.”