NATCHITOCHES — The Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame welcomes eight new inductees Saturday and also will honor former Advocate Executive Sports Editor Butch Muir and New Orleans sportswriter Bill Bumgarner, along with outdoors activist Dr. L.J. Mayeux.
Induction ceremonies are set for 5 p.m. at the Natchitoches Events Center. Four athletes with close ties to Baton Rouge are part of the group being inducted: Catholic High and NFL running back Warrick Dunn, former LSU baseball star Eddy Furniss, former LSU football star Terry Robiskie and former Southern football coach Pete Richardson.
Also being inducted are former Louisiana Tech and NFL receiver Roger Carr, New Orleans Saints running back Deuce McAllister, jockey Mark Guidry and former Grambling-New Orleans Jazz basketball player Aaron James.
Muir spent 33 years as sports editor of the Morning Advocate and The Advocate before retiring in April. Muir and Bumgarner, who worked for both the States-Item and the Times-Picayune, will receive the Distinguished Service Award in Sports Journalism from the Louisiana Sports Writers Association.
The LSWA’s Dave Dixon Award for Sports Leadership goes to Marksville’s Mayeux, the former national president and chairman of the board of Ducks Unlimited. Mayeux is known for his work to restore duck habitats across North America, including Louisiana.
Mayeux, known as “Dr. Duck,” told those on hand for the Hall of Fame news conference that he practices medicine to support his “duck habit.”
“I want to thank the nominating committee for this tremendous honor,” Mayeux said.
Mayeux’s involvement with Ducks Unlimited began almost 30 years ago. He worked through the ranks as a volunteer and became national president in 2000, then chairman of the board, from 2002-2005.
He instituted the Adopt-a-Classroom Program for third through fifth grades at local, state, national and international levels in 1994.
Mayeux received Ducks Unlimited’s highest honor, the Wings of Innovation Award, for his Cygnet Curriculum. He authored its 32-week teaching guides that focus on conservation.
Muir and Bumgarner represent nearly 90 years of journalism experience.
“I’m honored to go in with this class,” Muir said. “It’s an honor to be recognized along with the past journalists who have won this award.”
Muir’s entire 49-year journalism career was based in Louisiana. The West Monroe native was the longest-serving sports editor at one of Louisiana’s major newspapers.
Before moving to Baton Rouge in 1974, Muir began his career at the Monroe Morning World as a staff writer before graduating from West Monroe High in 1964. He was the Morning World’s sports editor from 1969-72 and was on the Monroe News-Star staff. He is a 1971 graduate of Northeast Louisiana University, now the University of Louisiana-Monroe.
In 2006, Muir was named the LSWA’s Mac Russo Award winner for his “great contributions to the (LSWA) organization’s progress and ideals.”
Bumgarner, a high-school sports historian who continues to work for various publications, called winning the DSA award “the pinnacle of my career.” He is in his 40th year as a sportswriter.
After moving with his family to New Orleans in 1955, Bumgarner graduated from New Orleans Academy (1967) and the University of Southwestern Louisiana, now the University of Louisiana-Lafayette in 1971, and went to work for the New Orleans States-Item in 1972.
He remained on the staff when the States-Item was merged into the Times-Picayune. During his 29-year stint (1980-2009), Bumgarner covered high school sports and made a huge impact on the LSWA.
Bumgarner served the LSWA as its president for two years. He also is a past Mac Russo Award recipient.
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