December 5, 2020

Mr. Mason Alford

Mason AlfordBeloved Heard County Principle and Coach, Mason Alford passed away at his home on Friday, October 16, 2015.

Funeral services for Mr. Alford were conducted on Monday, October 19, 2015 from the Stutts Funeral Home Chapel with the Reverend Brett Mathews officiating. The interment followed in the Franklin City Cemetery.

Music was provided by Leesa Stutts Cothran. Honorary pallbearers were Etsell Hornsby, Talmadge Davis, and Frank Crook. Active pallbearers were, Fred Harcrow, Benji Hyatt, Ray Summers, Trey Alford, Ross Henry, and Shane Knowles.

Mr. Alford was born on April 15, 1927, in Brewton Alabama, the son of the late Will and Ruth Holmes Alford. He graduated from Damascus High School and shortly after was drafted into the United States Army where he served gallantly during World War II.

After his tour of duty he returned home where attended Auburn University where he obtained a four year degree in only three years. He immediately entered graduate school where he served as a graduate assistant in the physical education department. He completed his Masters Degree in physical education and school administration.

While at Auburn he met Don Staples and Clarence Lambert. They immediately saw the great potential in Mr. Alford and offered him a teaching job at Centralhatchee High School where he taught math, P.E., typing, history, and coached girls and boys basketball.

When Centralhatchee consolidated with Heard County High School in 1954 he joined the staff where he taught math, driver’s education physical education, as well as adding baseball to his coaching responsibilities.

His outstanding coaching ability led him for twenty years. During this time he claimed 422 victories and lost 162 basketball games, going to state tournaments eight times in basketball and two times in baseball, winning second place in the state in 1964 in baseball. In 1962 and again in 1971 he was voted “Region 5B Coach of the Year.”

Buddy Sullivan of the LaGrange Daily News said, “At that time, Mason was one of the top three winning girl’s coaches in the state of Georgia.”

In 1974 he was promoted to the Heard County Elementary School Principle where he finished his teaching career. He was proud to have coached all the children he had through the years, but was especially proud to have coached Arnold Umbach, who later became the pitcher for the Atlanta Braves.

After his retirement he became the Bailiff of the Heard County Court System, and served in that capacity for twenty years.  He also served as a Special Deputy Sheriff under Sheriff Virgil Bledsoe of several years, was a charter member of the Heard County Housing Authority, Vice-Chairman of the Hospital Authority, and was instrumental in starting the first Heard County Recreation Department.

He was a long time member of the American legion Post 148, and was a faithful attender of the Franklin United Methodist Church.  In his younger years he enjoyed hunting, fishing, playing baseball, and playing the fiddle!

The people of Heard County will forever be grateful for the tremendous love, patience, direction, and caring that Mr. Mason Alford gave to their children.

For his great devotion for the students he was honored by having a road named after him, and also the Heard County High School baseball field. These acts of kindness were both honors that he was humbled by, and very proud of!

He was a loving husband, father, and grandfather.  He will forever be remembered in the hearts of all who knew and loved him.

He is survived by his wife Jean Mishler; two sons, Ted Alford, and Ty Alford (Tammy), all of Franklin, GA.; two granddaughters, Ryan Henderson of Newnan, GA., and Blake Alford of LaGrange, GA.; and three grandsons, Jared Bailey of Centralhatchee, GA., Trey Alford, and Will Alford, both of Franklin, GA.; and a host of adoring students and friends.  Other than his parents he was preceded in death by two sisters, Ruby White and Ethylene Alford; and one brother, Hubbard Alford.

In lieu of flowers the family request that donations be made to the “Mason Alford Memorial Scholarship Fund” at Heard County High School, 545 Main Street, Franklin, Georgia 30217.

Those who wish may write memorial tributes at

Stutts Funeral home of Franklin, Georgia is in charge of arrangements.


  1. Nick Toney says

    A kindly and fair man, he nevertheless terrified me in elementary school for if you had to go see him, it usually meant a paddling. He started his job at Heard Elementary the same year I began as a student. Will always remember him. My sincere condolences for his family and Heard County as they have lost a good man and great educator.

  2. Pat McGrady says

    Loved Mr Alford! So happy to see he will be honored every year as a scholarship is given in his memory. I will definitely be a part if it. My prayers are with you all as you go through the days ahead.

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