Former Park Football Coach Nardone Dies

WHEELING — The Ohio Valley coaching fraternity is in mourning as it lost one of its own Christmas Day.

Former Wheeling Park football coach, teacher and athletic director Mark Nardone passed away according to a post shared on Twitter from his son, Nick.

Nardone was 54. He had been battling ALS, more commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease, for the past 18 months.

A former standout at Wheeling Park and West Liberty State College, Nardone took over the program in 1997 and remained on the sideline for 11 years before retiring in 2008.

Nardone compiled a 76-44 record as coach of the Patriots and made the playoffs in seven of his 11 seasons.

Despite no longer coaching, Nardone was never far from the action and regularly attended Wheeling Park athletic events

Nardone became aware something was amiss while competing in the 5K portion of the Ogden Newspapers Half Marathon Classic in 2015. After a few doctors visits, he was diagnosed with the disease on July 29, 2015.

ALS is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord.

Nardone stayed positive through the process and never abandoned hope, living each day with a positive outlook. Nardone was loved by many as shown by the outpouring of responses from those who knew him on social media throughout the day.

Nardone is survived by his wife, Sudie, and three children, Eleni, Nick and Tino.

The Intelligencer sports staff offers its condolences and sends its thoughts and prayers to the Nardone family.

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