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With a heavy heart, we share the news of the untimely passing of Robert “Coach” Shoudt, the fearless leader and charismatic coach of the 1973 Norristown Area High School, P.I.A.A. Eastern States Track and Field Championship Team. In the early hours of Thursday, October 26, this revered icon peacefully left this world, leaving behind a remarkable legacy that will forever be etched in the annals of sporting greatness. At the age of 81, he bid farewell, but his spirit, his unwavering dedication, and his profound impact on the lives he touched will never fade.
Robert's coaching career was an awe-inspiring tale of triumphant victories, adorned with countless championship titles at both the high school and collegiate levels, including multiple world records and being selected as the national coach of the year. His name was synonymous with excellence, etched in golden letters into the esteemed halls of sports history, forever enshrined as a true motivator. Yet, it was not merely the accolades and accolades alone that defined him; it was the profound connection he forged with the team while at NAHS.
Every fiber of this extraordinary man's being pulsated with an unyielding love for his athletes, their dreams, and their formidable potential. His family finds solace in the divine blessing that his final excursion graced the hallowed grounds of the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame. It was a surreal moment of poignant reunion, a fitting tribute to the indomitable spirit of the 1973 team. Little did they know that destiny, in its mysterious ways, would usher Robert into eternal slumber just six days later.
Those fortunate enough to have been under his tutelage, to have witnessed first-hand his unmatched tenacity and passion, speak with reverence of the invaluable lessons they learned from him. This revered coach was a sage, imparting the wisdom of resilience, determination, and the irreplaceable virtues of courage and leadership. Through his steadfast belief in their potential, he instilled in them an insatiable hunger for success, propelling them to greatness they themselves never thought possible. The echoes of his booming voice, filled with conviction, continue to reverberate through the corridors of their hearts.
On November 8, 2023 we will bid farewell, and celebrate his life, his extraordinary achievements, and the countless lives he transformed. He will be remembered not merely as a coach, but as a guiding light whose passion set ablaze a spark within the hearts of those he touched. His legacy will continue to inspire generations to come, reminding us all that with a little fire in our hearts and dedication, we too can achieve the impossible. Rest in eternal peace, dear Coach Shoudt.
He will be remembered and missed by his children Cindy and Bob; grandchildren Kira, Noah, Sierra, Bailey and Molly; great grandchildren Joey, Carter, Bradyn, Kora, and Augustine; Daughter in Law Bethann; and Grandchildren in laws Joe, Marissa and Nicholas
Relatives and Friends are invited to his viewing on Wednesday, November 8th, starting at 10 a.m. and funeral service at 11 a.m., both at The Bernard S. Gutkowski Funeral Home, 305 Jefferson Street, Swedesburg, PA 19405, 610-275-6385, Keith J. Murphy, F.D. www.gutkowskifuneralhome.com. . Interment will follow in Valley Forge Memorial Gardens. In lieu of flowers, he would ask that you make a contribution to Meals on Wheels in his honor; Neighborhood Meals on Wheels, P.O. Box 60621, King of Prussia, PA 19406