This article was contributed by San Benito High School.
San Benito High School held a naming ceremony for the Judy Rider Wrestling Facility on Jan. 25, the day of the annual Lady Baler Bash wrestling tournament.
The SBHS Board of Trustees on Nov. 19 approved the naming of the campus wrestling facility after Rider, a former board member and wrestling supporter who passed away in 2006.
Dozens of Rider’s family and friends, along with Baler wrestling supporters and alumni, were on hand for the ceremony, during which Rider’s sons (and Baler alumni) Tim, Bill, Ken and Donny, were on hand to reveal the facility name and receive the plaque that will be placed inside the Mattson Gym facility.
Principal Adrian Ramirez noted that Rider years ago had a vision for a Baler girls’ wrestling program, and that she would be proud that more than 300 female wrestlers from various schools were participating in the Lady Baler Bash.
“It’s great to honor (Mrs. Rider) it’s great to honor the Rider family and it’s great to have her name on this building and remember what a beautiful lady she was,” said Athletic Director Tod Thatcher.
Baler varsity wrestling coach Steven Salcedo, who remembers the support Rider provided for him, his brothers and the entire wrestling program for years, said “she wouldn’t want the spotlight on herself today, but I’m glad that Judy will be honored for today and for many years to come.”
Salcedo also announced that the Lady Baler Bash would be renamed next year to honor Rider’s contributions to the wrestling program.
District Superintendent Shawn Tennenbaum noted Rider’s “heartfelt commitment to our students, student-athletes and school community,” pointing out her “lifelong commitment to helping others become successful.”
“Mrs. Rider supported and guided thousands of students and student-athletes to grow and develop into successful men and women,” he said.