Five locals to receive floodwall stars

By Frank Lewis

August 30, 2013

Frank Lewis

PDT Staff Writer

Five people who have distinguished themselves in a variety of ways will receive stars on the floodwall in Portsmouth in a ceremony to be held on Sept. 14.

The Daily Times learned exclusively Thursday, Michael Bush, Richard E. Hopkins, Richard E. Hopkins, Jr., Denny L. Ramey and Paul E. Sanderson will all be added to the long line of area natives who have made names for themselves not just in this community but in other parts of the world as well.

Michael Lee Bush is known worldwide as being instrumental in giving pop great Michael Jackson “the look” with his creation of jackets and accessories. He began working with Jackson in 1985, meeting the singer in a trailer on the set of the “Captain EO” movie, for which Bush had sewn costumes.

Bush is also the author of “The King of Style: Dressing Michael Jackson.” He learned his craft in Portsmouth from his mother and grandmother, who made wedding gowns, prom dresses and quilts. Bush attended East High School and graduated in 1976.

Richard “Red” Hopkins (deceased) was coach of the Portsmouth Trojans from 1926 to 1936. During this 11-year period, Coach Hopkins would lead PHS to five state tournament appearances, including Final Four teams in 1927 and 1929, a state championship team in 1931, and a state runner-up team in 1934. His 1931 and 1934 teams both won 20 games. He amassed a record of 168-58, and had only one losing season, that being in 1933 when the Trojans went 10-12. In the 1929 and 1931 tournament, Coach Hopkins led the Men of Troy to wins over Canton McKinley, Ohio’s all-time winningest program. Five times his teams won at least 16 games in a season.

Coach Hopkins son and grandson also coached the Trojans. His son, Richard “Dick” Hopkins, was coach from 1976-1981, while his grandson, Richard “Rick” Hopkins, coached PHS from 2002-2006.

Dick Hopins first two teams went 12-8 and 11-8 respectively, competing in Class AAA. In 1978, PHS became a Class AA school, and won the state championship in their very first year. He coached the 1978 state campionship team which was undefeated, defeating Cleveland Cathedral Latin in the title contest. He then led the Trojans to an undefeated regular season in 1979 goping 18-0, winning the AP title and finishing the season at 21-1. In 1981 he finished after a 20-4 season with a career PHS record of 103-34, making him the 4th winningest coach in Trojan History. The senior-junior Hopkins combination made history by being the only father/son duo to win state championships in Ohio history.

Denny L. Ramey has been executive director of the Ohio State Bar Association for 25 years. As such, he was the CEO of an organization with an annual budget of $12 million, a membership of 30,000 Ohio lawyers and overseer of a staff of 65 employees.

Ramey was responsible for making Casemaker, a computerized legal research system, available at no charge for Ohio members of the Bar Association. Eventually he was able to sell Casemaker to 28 other states representing 400,000 lawyers. In 2011 Ramey became the first and only non-lawyer to receive the Ohio Bar Medal, the highest award given by the OSBA. In 2012 he was awarded Honorary Life Fellow by the OSBA foundation. The foundation also renamed its Award for Distinguished Community Service the Ramey Award.

On Dec. 9, 2012 the OSBA Foundation established the Denny L. Ramey Education Fund to honor him for his service and unwavering support to the legal profession. The Denny L. Ramey Fund will support projects in the Appalachian region of Ohio, and in particular, Portsmouth.

Paul Edward Sanderson (deceased) was a native of Otway, Ohio who joined the Navy in 1942. He was stationed on the aircraft carrier “The Boxer,” at Pearl Harbor and the Kwajalein Islands during World War II, serving his country for six years.

In the Navy he discovered his talent and love for teaching while serving as an aviation instructor. In the 1950’s he taught at Embry Riddle School of Aviation and then started the Sanderson Aviation Ground School providing pilot training courses. His training programs were adopted by thousands of flight schools supporting the training experience of almost three million pilots worldwide. It became the standard for the Air Force ROTC program. In 1974 Sanderson Films merged with Jeppesen & Company. The combined entity called Jeppesen Sanderson, Inc. became the world’s leading flight information services company. In 2009, Sanderson was inducted in the Flight Instructors Hall of Fame by the National Association of Flight Instructors.

Frank Lewis may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 252, or at flewis@civitasmedia.com. For breaking news, follow Frank on Twitter @FrankLewisPDT.