Melvin Stringer, known to most as “Coach” and to family he was known as “Hank” was born February 20, 1933 in Monticello, Mississippi. He graduated from Southern University Laboratory School in 1953 and earned a Bachelor’s Degree and a Master’s Degree in Secondary Education from Southern University A&M College. He was a U.S Army Veteran having served in the Korean War between 1953-1955. He was a member of The American Legion Post 502 in Scotlandville.
His stellar track and field coaching career began as he served as assistant coach at Scotlandville Senior High. Coach was affiliated with the LA Track and Field Association, Louisiana High School Athletic Association and Louisiana Interscholastic Athletic Organization (LIAO). His accomplishments included the 1964 Boys Track State Championship and the 1965 Boys Track LIALO State Championship. Later as head coach, he helped garner the 1970 and 1971 Girls Track District Championships, 1971 Girls Track State Championship, 1972-74, 1977, and 1979 Boys Track District Championship, and 1975 Boys Track District Runner-up. A few years later, Coach was assigned to Baker High School between 1981 and 1990, where he taught social studies, driver’s education and coached winning teams: three Boys Track District Championships, three Boys Cross Country District Championships, Boys Track Regional Championship, and Boys Track State Championship. He was recognized as Coach of the Year and inducted into the Baker High School Athletic Hall of Fame. In 2016, he was inducted into the Scotlandville Hornets Alumni Association. The ultimate sign of his accomplishments in track and field was the Annual Coach Melvin Stringer Track and Field Relays.
He enjoyed gardening, hunting, fishing, and entertaining his family and friends.
Coach Stringer has touched the lives of many people, on and off the field. In working with the athletes, he always stressed, “Be the best that you can be” and “hard work always pays off.”