Barry Welch to be honored!
Quincy’s longtime Recreation Director, Barry Welch, will be honored June 26 at the 23rd annual North Quincy High School Football Alumni Golf Tournament at Hyannis Golf Club.
When he received the news a while back, Welch laughed, because as a high school kid who barely weighed 100 pounds, “I didn’t play football or any of the sports,” he said. But he did volunteer to be manager of the football, hockey, and baseball teams “because I wanted to be part of it.”
You’d have to say he succeeded so well that decades later, Welch is still a part of the North Quincy football scene. He hasn’t missed a Thanksgiving Day game against Quincy High School since 1957 and for years he would accept offers from the coaches to give talks to the players.
“Football is a very, very tough game to play and I have always admired the kids who kept playing and kept practicing,” said Welch. “It wasn’t easy for them, but they were all about being teammates and that’s special.”
When he accepts his honor in a few weeks, Welch said he’ll look around the room filled with former NQHS football players “and I promise you, I will be able to say I saw most of them play.”
Beyond his passion for the NQHS football program, Welch is being cited for his commitment to the kids of Quincy. As Recreation Director, Welch is where he feels most comfortable and where he virtually grew up — in the gyms and on the playgrounds.
“My mother died when I was 7 and my father died when I was 13. My older brother basically brought me up, but truthfully, the coaches at North Quincy High School raised me.”
One of Welch’s mentors, former NQHS teacher and Quincy High School principal Lloyd Hill, was honored a few years ago at this same North Quincy High School Football Alumni Golf Tournament.
“He was a gentleman who taught by example. So many of the North Quincy High School coaches were,” said Welch. “That’s why I’m very honored and so looking forward to this event.”