After 36 years, 32 of which was spent teaching and coaching in Ballinger, Robert Buxkemper has hung it up for the final time. After his 32nd year in Ballinger Coach Buxkemper left in a way that left many in the community feeling that he was deserving of more. After finally retiring for good former players of Coach Buxkemper came together to give him the sendoff that he truly deserved. On Friday January 17th, before the boys varsity game, Coach Buxkemper was honored by former players and students flanked by family and friends, it was a sight to behold. A lifelong Bearcat Coach Buxkemper dedicated his life to teaching and coaching young student athletes. Superintendent Jeff Butts said it best during the ceremony to honor Buxkemper, “there might not be another coach alive that puts as much emphasis on the teaching aspect of the job.” He was meticulous, a perfectionist that demanded the best out of you not only because he wanted it, but because he knew you could do it. Seeing him out on the court one last time in red and black surely brought back many nostalgic feelings for many former players and students. Many of whom were out on the court with him and many more that were in the stands. The gym foyer was standing room only with former colleagues coming out to see him off the way a career such as his deserved. To understand the impact that Coach Buxkemper had on people he came into contact with you need only look at the stands where seated were the retired coach of Coleman basketball who Buxkemper said was one of their fiercest rivals and whom he learned so much from and also the coach of Reagan County that Buxkemper wanted to be present for the occasion. Big Country Fellowship of Christian Athletes Director Steve Keenum spoke at length of Buxkemper and his dedication to his craft, as the two had coached together at Ballinger early in their careers. His dedication to his craft and his dedication to his students were on full display. The presentation that happened was not something organized by the school or by the school board. It was the idea of a few boys that have now grown into men. Men that Coach Robert Buxkemper knew they could become.