*Leon Dixon was inducted into the Oklahoma Basketball Coaches Hall of Fame on June 8, just 17 days before he died at age 76. Dixon spent 18 years coaching at Checotah High School, the same place he played basketball as a boy. After playing college ball at Connors State and Northeastern State, he worked briefly at a post office and then spent two years in the Army. Dixon started his coaching career in 1964 at Stidham High School in eastern Oklahoma. Coach Dixon had brief stints at Bixby and Stigler before returning to Checotah for good in 1972.
*OTHER: Oklahomans with sports backgrounds who died recently:
*Dorothy Hardlicka DeGroot, 98, a center for the 1932 Luther High girls basketball team.
*Connie Golden, 77, a Norman resident who was owner and publisher of Speedhorse, a publication focused on quarter horse racing.
*Janis Hill, 47, a Moore resident who participated in Special Olympics.
*Ernest Johnson, 84, a Nicoma Park resident who was a championship boxer while serving in the Army during the Korean War.
*Donna Blakesley Kanaly, 82, played basketball at Mooreland High School.
*Elmer Marose, 91, a World War II veteran who ushered OU football games with the Boy Scouts for 34 years.
*June Northwood, 94, an Oklahoma City resident who was an avid golfer. She had a 5-handicap and three aces.
*James Pratt, 74, played basketball at Southeast High before becoming a captain with the Oklahoma City Fire Department.
*Bob Reeds, 91, participated in football, basketball and track for Edmond High School. Son of former University of Central Oklahoma football coach and athletic director Claude Reeds.
*Joe Shriver, 84, an OG&E dispatcher from Oklahoma City who spent off time as an umpire.
*Ruth Walters, 76, a Yukon golfer who had three holes-in-one.
*SPECIAL RECOGNITION: Phil Cowan, who died Thursday at age 84, was owner and publisher of the Bethany Tribune-Review from 1957 through 1989. He once hired a teenage boy to provide sports coverage for Bethany Nazarene College (now Southern Nazarene U.), Bethany High School and the three Putnam City high schools. Have a week's worth of stories typed and slid under the office door by the time he and son Tom arrived for work on Monday morning. Seven bucks per story. Good coin in those days. The Oklahoma Sports Milestones' author remains grateful for his first paying newspaper job 32 years ago.