North Carolina High School Athletic Association

Long-time Coach Stafford Dies At 81


REIDSVILLE —  Long-time coach Grady Johnson Stafford passed away on Sunday at the age of 81.
A memorial service will be held on Friday at 11 a.m. at Covington Memorial Wesleyan Church, with burial at a later date in the Speedwell Presbyterian Church cemetery.
A native of Rockingham County, he attended Appalachian State University after serving in the Air Force. In 1959, he started his teaching career at Elliot Duncan School in Mayodan and then moved to Madison-Mayodan High School in 1960. The following year he went to Wentworth High School and spent 16 years there.
Stafford taught social studies and physical education, coached baseball and men’s basketball and served as athletic director. In 1976 Wentworth won its first NCHSAA state championship in men’s basketball. 
In 1981 Stafford moved to Stoneville High School to teach and coach the basketball and two years later Stoneville earned its first state championship in basketball. Stafford retired in 1986 but continued assisting both Reidsville and Rockingham County’s athletic programs.
In lieu of flowers, the family has asked that memorials be made to: The Stafford-Wall Scholarship c/o Rockingham County High School 180 High School Rd. Reidsville, N.C, 27320.