Legendary Cornell University lacrosse coach, Richie Moran, will visit Owego on Saturday, Sept. 22, for a book signing and meet-and-greet event at Riverow Bookshop located at 187 Front St.
The 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. session will put the spotlight on his autobiography released last year, entitled, “It’s Great to be Here.” Accompanying Moran will be Owego native and book co-author, Steve Lawrence.
Lawrence, a 1974 Owego Free Academy graduate and well-known Ithaca Times sports columnist for 26 years shared, “The session is a chance for players and coaches, and the public, to meet a true living legend.”
As Cornell’s head coach for 29 seasons, Moran led Big Red Lacrosse to three undefeated seasons, three national championships and 15 Ivy League championships, along with other notable achievements such as the NCAA record for 42 consecutive victories.
Moran’s resume also features other admirable credits, such as being named Man of the Year by the United States Intercollegiate College Association and Head Coach Emeritus at Cornell, along with inductions into numerous Halls of Fame. Noteworthy in the lax world, Moran was also a recipient of the Spirit of Tewaaraton Award, which is presented to individuals who have incorporated the virtues of the game while making a significant contribution to the lives of others.
Lawrence remarked, “Richie Moran is a genuinely nice guy who draws people to him,” adding, “Players will say, ‘I was a good student and a good player, but Moran taught me how to be a leader.’”
The book was released last year on Moran’s 80th birthday. As an example of how beloved a coach he remains, a record number of past players and their families, coaches and the public attended the first book signing where Moran signed some 335 copies and took the time to chat sincerely with each guest.
In a YouTube video recorded last year by Cornell Sports, Moran explains his inspiration for writing the book. While spending time with his grandchildren, Moran felt the desire to leave a story for them to remember, and a story influenced by the fact that he had never had the opportunity to meet his own grandparents who remained in Ireland while Moran’s parents emigrated here. At the young age of four in 1941, Richie became man of the house when five of his brothers went off to serve during World War II. One brother did not return home, and was killed in action.
“It’s Great to be Here” not only highlights Moran’s incredible coaching career, but readers unfamiliar with the world of lacrosse will relate to his life messages. The book shines a light on the lessons Moran learned from his upbringing, as well as shares insight into overcoming obstacles and personal struggles.
For Lawrence, he explained that it was during his time as a coach and guide-runner for the U.S. Association of Blind Athletes when he first entertained the thought of publishing his stories.
A memory for a lifetime, Lawrence guided his friend, champion marathoner, Rick Holborow, during the 1988 Paralympic Games in Seoul, Korea. Since then Lawrence has published 2,000-plus articles and is a two-time winner of the New York Press Association’s Better Newspaper Contest for sports features, in addition to his long sports column run at the Ithaca Times.
Regarding his role as co-author of “It’s Great to be Here,” Lawrence said that he has always enjoyed telling people’s stories, and, as a friend of Moran’s for many years, added, “This project means so much to me.”
For additional information, visit https://richiemoran.com.