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We will miss Eddie Crawford

For more than half a decade, few people defined Ole Miss athletics like Eddie Crawford.

During that same period, he and his wife, Shirley, were involved and respected citizens of Oxford.

It was a life well lived for Eddie Crawford, from his days as a three-sport star for Ole Miss in the 1950s before he returned here in the 1960s to coach and ultimately lead athletics fundraising.

In the days long before this dawn of Rebel athletics, Crawford worked hard to find support and supporters to begin the transformation of aging Ole Miss sports facilities and he was a consistent smile and strong hand that represented the university well.

Crawford’s career was so long and stellar that it is easy to forget that he was actually the head basketball coach at Ole Miss for a handful of years. It wasn’t his favorite job, but he did it with the same vigor that he played with as a Rebel — all out, all in.

There was a period of two to three decades that you didn’t attend an Ole Miss event without seeing Eddie and Shirley Crawford there and they were the ones that most everybody wanted to talk to.

And whether Ole Miss teams were winning or losing, Eddie Crawford never changed. He was always a Rebel first and foremost. And, his talent and passion will be missed.