BURLINGTON, NC – Longtime team physician for Walter M. Williams High School teams and staple of the athletic community in Alamance County, Dr. Charles Kernodle, Jr., passed away at the age of
The North Carolina High School Athletic Association (NCHSAA) presented Dr. Charles Kernodle, Jr. from Burlington with the 2019 Russell Blunt Legends Award on May 2, 2019 at the Association's Annual Meeting at the Dean E. Smith Center. The award honors an individual who has spent a lifetime in support of the values of high school athletics.
Dr. Kernodle graduated from Elon in 1938 and then from Duke Medical School in 1942. He was a World War 2 Army Captain – Chief of Surgeons for Battle of the Bulge soldiers. Closer to home, Kernodle is well-known and beloved in Burlington for his service as the team doctor for the Williams High School Football team from 1949 up unto the present, some 70 years. In fact, despite retiring in 1984, he continued to ride the team bus to away games on Friday nights well past his 100th birthday.
Dr. Charles, as he is known by the team and school community, is the founder of the Kernodle Clinic in Burlington and initiated free athletic physicals for Elon University and Williams High School, with the clinic now providing free physicals for all Alamance County High School and Middle School athletes. He has been given the Alamance-Burlington Schools Distinguished Service in Sports Award in 2011, the Order of the Long Leaf Pine in 2014, and granted a lifetime membership and service award by the North Carolina Football Coaches Association. Truly a legend in his community, the Williams High School Football Field was named in his honor in 2007.
In addition to the numerous recognitions he has received, the Dr. Charles Kernodle Scholarship Fund was established on his 100th birthday and is presented annually to a senior in need on the Walter M. Williams High School Football Team who demonstrates a strong work ethic and high moral character.