The story of Ralph Pere and how he took a good team to greatness

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GALLIANO, La. (WGNO) – Ralph Pere is a legendary figure on the bayou. He coached the South Lafourche Tarpons to a pair of state titles, in 1971 and 1977.

Reed Pere played for his dad. On the football field, he wasn't Ralph's so; he was just another player.

“He was an equal opportunity butt-kicker,” Reed remembers.

Coach Pere won 147 games at South Lafourche. Reed said he was 11 when the Tarpons won the title in 1977, but his father let him travel with the team.  Lifetime memories were made.

"Just being part of that special year with Bobby Hebert and Ed Orgeron. That was a lot of fun," Reed says.

One of Ralph Pere's closest friends in coaching was J.T. Curtis. Reed said his father loved playing teams from New Orleans. He said his dad believed those clubs made his better.

"Part of his belief -- play tough competition in pre-district. He played J.T. every year. Never beat J.T. But he and J.T. became good friends. He spoke at his funeral," Reed said.

Coach Pere died in January of 2011. He lived 68-years. It is only appropriate that the stadium at South Lafourche High School is named in honor of its legendary coach.

Learn more about the names behind local football stadiums, click here.


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