North Branford High somber after news of coach’s death

NORTH BRANFORD, Conn. (WTNH)– The hallways at North Branford High School were somber Friday after learning of the death of long-time coach Floyd Parness.

Parness collapsed and died suddenly Thursday morning during an early morning run. Grace Little said, “He’s newly retired, but he’d wake up early in the morning and go for a run.”

Parness was a track & field, as well as cross country coach. The trophies that adorn the halls of North Branford High represent his 20 years at the school. He recently retired from a position at Sikorsky Aircraft.

Little said that Coach Parness was always ready to run with his team.

It didn’t really matter what the weather was like that day he would go out and run with us.”

Parness spent most of his time at school coaching the athletes. Michael Madoule said, “He was a friend. He was so understanding about everything that we did.” Grace Little said, “On Saturday morning practices, every time he would have a nice breakfast ready for us. He brought bagels and muffins and chocolate milk.”

n North Branford High somber after news of coachs death
North Branford High School Cross Country team with Coach Floyd Parness (Photo courtesy of North Branford High School)

Parness would show up for student events, and even the prom. The proud coach took pictures with the students on their special day.

Michael Madoule added, “I work at a summer camp over the summer and he would go there. He would set up a race for the kids. He was the basis for the most of the things in this town.”

Thursday night over 100 students gathered at the cross country course for a candlelight vigil to remember Parness.

Related Content: Students, staff remember North Branford teacher at candlelight vigil

Madoule said, “We bought a few hundreds candles. Set up a nice heart in the field. We all gathered around and we were able to verbally share our feelings.”

On Friday, students left a note and flowers in Parness’s memory on the cross country course; a quiet place where the students often practiced with Parness. Little said, “I will remember him for just being so optimistic and positive and keeping me going even when I wasn’t having a good day.”

WTNH NEWS8 provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review. Also, you can now block any inappropriate user by simple selecting the drop down menu on the right of any comment and selection "Block User" from there.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s