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Publish date: Nov 8, 2010

Belmont Abbey coach Hodge dies after sudden illness

Belmont Abbey cross country coach Bill Hodge died suddenly Friday evening at Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte, N.C., after suffering a heart attack during the Conference Carolinas Cross Country Men’s and Women’s Championships.

Bill Hodge

Hodge was in his first year as head cross country coach and second year as track and field coach at Belmont Abbey. He joined Belmont Abbey after two years at Mount Olive, where he started the men’s and women’s track and field program in 2008.

“Mere words cannot express the sorrow we are feeling at the sudden and tragic loss of coach Hodge,” Belmont Abbey Director of Athletics Quin Monahan said. “Bill was a fine man. He loved and adored his family, was committed to the young men and women on his cross country and track teams and a valued member of the Abbey family.”

Hodge spent seven years as cross country and track and field coach at Rider and five years at Robert Morris. A three-time Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference coach of the year, he guided Rider to the 2004 women’s outdoor track and field conference championship, the first in school history, and produced the men’s cross country team’s highest finish in school history. Hodge led Robert Morris to two track and field conference championships, the first two in school history, and won Northeast Conference Coach of the Year honors in back-to-back years. A month before his death, Hodge was inducted into the Robert Morris College Athletics Hall of Fame.