jdhargisJ.D. Hargis’ individual selection to the Salem Community High School Sports Hall of Fame comes 12 years after he was inducted as a senior member of the 1952 football team.

At the time of his induction, Hargis has served 46 consecutive seasons as part of the chain gang at Salem Wildcat football games. During the early years of his endurance streak, which began in 1962, Hargis also worked several out-of-town games when the visiting school was required to supply worker assistance. Hargis estimates the number or games he has missed during his tenure can be counted on one hand despite bouts with open heart surgery, prostate cancer, and removal of a kidney due to cancer.

davidmeadorThe North Egypt Conference’s Most Valuable Player in 1985, running back/linebacker David Meador helped lead the Salem Wildcats football team to its first unbeaten, untied regular season, its most wins in a season in school history, and its first ever playoff victory.

Meador, a 1986 graduate of Salem Community High School, ran for a school record 1,681 yards in that 1985 season and set a school record for most career rushing yards with 3,278. Meador set two other school marks that year, which included most points scored in a season with 180 and most yards rushing in one game with 265 against Fairfield. Those 180 points ranked second in the state that season, while his rushing total was fifth best. He also ranked eighth in the state in tackles. He was also an NEC First Team pick on both sides of the ball.

amberyoungSalem Community High School’s first female four-sport athlete used her running skills to take her to the collegiate level. Amber (Wimberly) Young, a 1990 SCHS graduate, reached that status when she doubled up in the fall with cross country and volleyball. She added to that participation list with basketball in the winter and track in the spring.

Young did more than just participate. She also excelled. Young was an All-South selection and state meet participant in cross country, earned All-North Egypt Conference honors in volleyball and won her team’s Rebound and Defense Awards in basketball.

The 1985 Salem Wildcats football team went places the program had never gone before or since at the time of its Hall of Fame induction.

Their 10-1 record is still the most wins in a season in school history as are their 417 points scored, their 3,514 yards rushing and 3,886 yards of total offense. They, along with the 1943 team, are the only Salem football teams to go through the regular season unbeaten, but the 1985 team is the only one to go unbeaten and untied. Coach Chuck Budde’s team achieved another school first with the program’s first playoff victory. Salem rode a potent one-two punch in its backfield to much of its success, as that squad is the only one in school history that featured two 1,000-yard rushers. Running back David Meador led that ground attack with 1,681 yards and 30 touchdowns on his way to being named the North Egypt Conference’s Most Valuable Player. Meador was joined in the backfield by Mark Byars, who rushed for 1,173 yards. Seven times Meador and Byars rushed for 100 or more years in the same game.

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