ELIDA — The Northwest Ohio athletic community is mourning the loss of longtime official and administrator Dave May, who died Tuesday.
For more than 35 years, May worked as a teacher, coach, athletic director and tournament manager for Elida. He retired as the Bulldog athletic director seven years ago but remained active in Elida athletics and was the ticket manager for the school in 2016. He also served as the Western Buckeye League commissioner in 2016 and the Northwest Central Conference commissioner from 2004 to 2016.
Finalized funeral and visitation information hasn’t been set yet.
May, who grew up in Archbold, was a longtime official for softball, basketball, football and baseball and began his officiating career in 1979. In June of 2014, he was inducted into the Ohio High School Athletic Association’s Officials Hall of Fame.
Elida’s athletic director Dave Evans said that even though May retired seven years ago from his position as athletic director, he was always a part of the Bulldog athletic family.
“He is a true Bulldog,” Evans said. “He loved being here and loved being with the kids and part of the program. He was a great mentor when I first started and he was great to have around. Obviously a very tough loss.”
Evans said that May was such a popular and a beloved figure because he was fair to everybody, and he followed the rules.
“In this position as athletic director, you make some people happy and you make some people unhappy, but he was just fair with the way he judged everything and did a nice job there,” Evans said. “Again, he was always around supporting the kids and supporting the coaches. The coaches still appreciate today that he was around, joking with him and talking with him. His personality just kept him very popular around here.”
Wapakoneta athletic director Brad Rex said he had known Dave May for a long time, first as a coach and then as a fellow athletic director.
“It is just a sad day for the Western Buckeye League and people in Northwest Ohio in general because Dave was a great man because he not only cared about athletics but about the kids he worked with. He was a good person that we are going to sorely miss,” Rex said.
Rex added that May loved life, and that is what made him admirable to him.
“Sometimes this job could get tough, but he loved life and I had tremendous respect for him and what he did,” Rex said.