BVN Pool Formally Dedicated to Late Coach Greg House

On Friday, January 11th, the Blue Valley North Pool was officially renamed to the “Greg House Memorial Pool.” The ceremony was held at the Varsity Boys Swim and Dive meet against St. Thomas Aquinas and Olathe East. Dedicated to swim coach Greg House, who passed away in 2011, the Greg House Memorial Pool is the first Blue Valley District athletic facility to be named after a person.

House taught and coached in the Blue Valley District for 28 years, leading 20 teams of student athlete swimmers and divers, 10 of which were BVN teams, to state championships. In addition, House’s teams hold the record for most EKL titles in EKL history.

His motto, “Train like warriors, love like family, and compete like champions,” influenced his former students and athletes both in and out of the pool and continues to influence them throughout their lives. During the dedication ceremony, former BVN student athlete Sean Buffington, who swam from 1990-1993, shared about his experiences as a swimmer under House nearly 25 years ago. Having spent nearly 1,200 hours in the pool during his seasons with House, Buffington saw himself and other swimmers develop confidence, dedication and a strong work ethic.

While at times he thought about quitting, Buffington saw House’s inspirational coaching style as instrumental in keeping him dedicated to both the team and meeting his goals.

“At the end of the day, Coach House was one of the most influential people in my life,” Buffington said. Nearly 25 years have passed since Buffington has attended a swim meet, but he sees his experiences as a swimmer under House as important in in his life.

“I think back at the many times I thought about throwing in the towel on his swim team and never did,” Buffington said. “It influenced me throughout my life and I can only imagine there are hundreds of very similar and individual stories to go along with that and paint a picture of House.”

        Alumni Rebecca Zarazan Dunn, who graduated in 2001, shared part of the application she wrote to the district in support of the formal dedication of the pool. While House lead numerous teams to impressive victories, Dunn saw the evidence of House’s influence not in old newspaper headlines or state championship trophies, rather in the eyes and actions of former students and athletes.

“He made us feel infinite and taught us to rise to the challenge, look it in the face and always believe,” Dunn said.

        House was known for often sharing stories of former athletes in order to inspire his team. According to Dunn, these alumni athletes became faceless heroes and legends whom swimmers admired and who were part of a bigger story they too were becoming a part of.

“You might not have stepped into this pool since you left high school, but we all remember as soon as we walk in the weight of the importance of what it means to be a part of his legacy,” Dunn said.

        After the dedication ceremony, BVN continued the meet and ultimately won with 270 points. BVN swimmers won multiple events including the 200-yard Medley Relay, 200-yard IM, 50-yard Free, 100-yard Fly, 500-yard Free, 200-yard Free Relay, and the 400-yard Free Relay. In addition, freshman diver Spencer Eyen came in first with 236.85 points.