Coach Tommy Lee Johnson Jr.

By: Chelsea Davis-Bibb, Ed.D. In the words of John Wooden, “A good coach can change a game. A great coach can change a life.” This quote exemplifies the life, work and legacy of Tommy Lee Johnson Jr. who died on January 4. Coach Johnson was born on August 21, 1937, to Tommie Lee Johnson Sr. and Odie Huff Johnson. Religion played a part in his life as he attended Damascus Missionary Baptist Church, he was a part of the men’s chorus at Windsor Village United Methodist Church, and later in life held membership at United Faith Missionary Baptist Church. He married the love of his life Doris Jewel (White) Johnson in 1962, and in this union, they had two children (Tommy Lee Johnson, III and Dr. Saardia E. Johnson). He attended Booker T. Washington where he was a four-sport participant (basketball, football, baseball, and track), and held the state record in the broad jump. After high school, he attended Prairie View A & M University (PV) and received his Bachelor’s degree in Education and Master’s in Administration and Supervision. During his time at PV, he played basketball and was the captain of the golf team where he won the SWAC Men’s Golf Championship. Coach Johnson started his coaching career at the historical Carverdale High School (1960-1969) in the Cypress Fairbanks School District (Cy-Fair), where he coached football, basketball, baseball, and track. He took his basketball team to the state playoffs in 1965 (won a state title), 1966 (won a state title), 1967, and 1968. Carverdale High School was once the school that black students would attend before integration. The creation of this school started in 1925, when a German dairy farmer donated the one-room Tanner Road farmhouse, which was converted into a classroom for the school. Initially, the site was the first school for black students living in the Carverdale Community (once known as Independence Garden) and housed Greater Macedonia Baptist Church. The farmhouse was then moved to Dancy Road and the school was named Fairbanks Colored School and served students in grades first through sixth in 1926. The school […]

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