Mims leaves impressive legacy at PCA

Published 12:00 am Monday, May 17, 2004

[5/17/04]Bubba Mims’ sudden death Sunday morning left relatives and friends in shock and, for those at Porters Chapel Academy, grieving the loss of a man whose love of sports and enthusiam for youth were adding program after program at the school.

Mims, 46, had served as PCA’s football coach and athletic director since September 2000.

He took over the football team after former coach Jim Sizemore abruptly resigned. Mims eased the program through a rough period that year and compiled a 20-21 record in three-plus seasons.

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Mims was the oldest of four sons of the late Crawford and Betty “Boop” Mims. All, including sister Rene, grew up enjoying athletics. Gerald Crawford Jr., universally known as “Bubba” was having the time of his life at PCA, said one brother, Johnny.

“He was as happy as he had been in a long time since he had been out at Porters Chapel,” Johnny Mims said. “I think he was doing what he loved to do.”

PCA Headmaster Gwen Reiber said Mims, as athletic director, set an aggressive pace.

Since agreeing to manage all school athletics, Mims oversaw the addition of track, golf, and powerlifting programs at the private K-12 school. The softball team also underwent a successful transition from slow-pitch to fast-pitch.

During the last 20 years, there were times when PCA had too-few players to field a football team. Athletic participation nearly doubled on Mims’ watch, and capital improvements were made to the baseball field, gym, and football field. Long-term projects to build a fieldhouse and new football stadium were also started.

“He had a vision for what he wanted it to be,” Reiber said.

Mims also started a golf tournament as a PCA fund-raiser, and it will be renamed the Porters Chapel Academy Bubba Mims Memorial Classic, PCA events director Lisa Ingram said. The tournament, held at Vicksburg Country Club, will have its inaugural event on May 26.

Mims was an avid golfer, and coached PCA’s golf team since its inception in 2002.

“He loved to play golf and loved to be at the country club, and we thought it would be a nice thing to do,” Ingram said.

In addition to football and golf, Mims coached a youth baseball team, the Culkin Critters, to three Dizzy Dean state championships and spent this season as an assistant coach for PCA’s baseball team. His two sons, Gerald and Judd, play for PCA.

The Eagles still have at least one game left in the Academy-A state championship series against Heidelberg. Games 2 and 3 were to be played as a doubleheader today, but had already been postponed by rain for the second time.

PCA baseball coach Randy Wright said he is working with the Mims family to find a suitable date to play again, and the series would likely resume later this week.

“The state championship series is secondary to what’s going on right now,” Wright said. “Our thoughts and prayers are with Bubba’s family right now.”

“I think we’re all in total shock,” Mims’ brother, Peter, said. “I guess you always read and hear about it sometimes, but you never think it’ll happen to somebody close to you.”