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Lon Kruger was heavily involved in Las Vegas community

by Michael Baldwin Modified: July 15, 2011 at 6:22 pm •  Published: July 15, 2011

Long-time UNLV booster Wade Leavitt, who has followed the program for 40 years, said Kruger invested countless hours in the community and also helped raise money towards a $12 million practice facility that's nearing completion.

“You go to a women's volleyball game or soccer game and generally he and Barb were there,” Leavitt said. “He did so much in the community. He'd go anywhere they asked him to go. Sometimes I think they maybe asked too much of him time-wise.”

Jon Sadler, UNLV's radio play-by-play voice the past eight years, said he introduces Kruger at the post-season basketball banquet, telling the same story.

“I say, ‘I tried to find someone to say something bad about coach Kruger. It's another year I came up empty,'“ Sadler said. “You won't ever find a nicer guy or a guy with more integrity.”

Several coaches and athletes assist community projects but Phillips said Kruger is rare.

“There wasn't one person I met that didn't say, ‘What a wonderful human being, what a down-to-earth human being,'“ Phillips said. “It's so refreshing to see someone in his position reach out to so many people and try to help. We're really going to miss him.”

by Michael Baldwin
Redhawks, Barons, MLB, NFL Reporter
Mike Baldwin has been a sports reporter for The Oklahoman since 1982. Mike graduated from Okmulgee High School in 1974 and attended Oklahoma Christian University, graduating with a journalism degree in 1978. Mike's first job was sports editor...
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