ANKENY – Gary Telford, 61, of Ankeny, passed away June 19, 2014. The family will receive friends from 3 to 6 p.m. Sunday, June 22, at Ankeny High School, 1155 SW Cherry Street, Ankeny, Iowa 50023. Funeral services will be at 10:30 a.m. Monday, June 23, also at Ankeny High School. Burial will take place at 3 p.m., Monday, June 23, in Union Cemetery, 1131 Delaware Avenue, Ottosen, Iowa 50570.

Gary Dean Telford was born December 1, 1952 to Dean and Delores (Moench) Telford at Camp Pendleton, California. He was baptized on December 28, 1952 at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Oceanside, California. He confirmed his faith at Peace Lutheran Church in West Bend, May 7, 1967. Gary graduated in 1971 from Twin Rivers High School in Bode and served in the United States Naval Reserves from 1972 to 1978. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Northern of Iowa. He received his Masters Degree from Drake University.

His first teaching position after graduation was at Lake City, where he taught science. He worked at Ballard Community School District from 1979 to 1999, where he coached softball and held the position of Athletic Director. He was Athletic Director at Indianola High School from 1999 to 2002. At Ankeny Community School he was the Activities Director from 2002 to 2011.

Gary remained busy even in retirement-substitute teaching, starting track meets, ushering at Hilton Coliseum, working at the Iowa Hall of Pride, and traveling to visit friends. His last job was coaching the eighth grade Girls’ Softball team at Ballard.

Gary was inducted into the Iowa Softball Coaches Hall of Fame; received the Iowa High School Speech Association Administrator of the Year Award (the only athletic director to ever receive the award); Iowa Official of the Year for Cross Country and Track; Iowa High School Activities Director of the Year; inducted into the Ankeny High School Coaches Hall of fame; a long-time starter for the State Co-Ed Cross Country meet; and served two five-year terms on the Board of Directors for the Iowa Girls High School Athletic Union.

Bud Legg, Information Director at the Iowa High School Athletic Association, said, “Gary led three superlative activity programs at three very different sized schools. He never sought out recognition or awards for his works, but he was recognized by others for his dedication to students and the activities there were participated in during his career.”

Gary is survived by his parents, Dean and Delores Telford, of Humboldt; his brother, Steve (Lori) Telford, of Adel; three sisters, Deb (Scott) Andersen of Douglas, Wyoming; Diane (Brad) Foth, of Livermore; and Nancy (David) Groves of Colleyville, Texas; and eight nieces and nephews.

In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established in his name.

Soderstrum Funeral Home in Slater is assisting the family with arrangements. Condolences and photos may be shared at