Condolences for Don Ault

Harold Brown posted on 3/9/21

Dear Coach Ault, You had a positive impact on the developing minds of hundreds, probably thousands of young people. You tempered our desire with discipline and, more than most anyone else in our lives, taught us the power and success of teamwork, all while having fun. What a gift! You told us to have “intestinal fortitude”, which you certainly demonstrated by living such a worthwhile life that continued years beyond many of the souls that you coached. Your spirit lives on in our hearts. Thank you. Harold Brown, BHS class of 1963


Stephanie Dvorak posted on 3/4/21

Condolences to his family and friends. He was a kind man and always smiling.


John DeBlasis posted on 3/2/21

Debbie and Donnie there are a lot of superlatives that describe your father. As a coach, mentor, educator, friend.........he was simply the best in all areas. He was part of my life for over 50 years. He will be missed by all his players and the coaching fraternity.


Maryellen Devaul posted on 3/2/21

Debbie and Donnie...So sorry to hear that Uncle Don passed away..Have alot of fond memories of growing up around him and how he would tease me when Martins Ferry played Bellaire....RIP Uncle Don......Thoughts and prayers to you and Donnie....Maryellen


Bill Flanagan posted on 3/2/21

Great Coach and Better person , I loved playing football for Coach @ Bellaire high Class of 63 ❤️


Angel Horton posted on 3/2/21

I got the joy of taking care of Mr Ault when I worked at ccrc he was a very sweet guy always making jokes and very nice he will sadly be missed he always used to call me his favorite lady


Ed Robinson posted on 3/2/21

My deepest condolences to Debbie and Don...Debbie thank you for bringing coach to lunch in Wheeling to meet Mike Furda and me a few years reading and talking with former players, I must share how Coach had that great sense of humor and will never forget his pregame/Friday night story about a guy who drew pictures of mice while living in a garage...the mouse? Mickey and the guy? Walt Disney and the message? Never quit! He would also use his "whispering" voice to command more attention in his stories....and we will never forget him telling us to "strap on the bayonet because we are going up and over that hill!" thanks for sharing D-Train and thank you Coach certainly made a difference! Who could forget... Pre-Practice, Stance-Starts-Steps, only "2 pats" of butter on the potato for pregame meal, Side-Straddle-Hop, 2 Snickers and 2 Pepsi , and those tendency sheets to stop the opponent... Coach Ault's reach extends far beyond what people will ever know!


DENNIS DEBLASIS posted on 3/2/21

I can't say how grateful I am to have had Coach Ault in my life. I feel that the strength & passion you passed on to all your players exemplified your life. You will be greatly missed.


Bruce Bonar posted on 3/2/21

Teachers change lives. Coach Ault was a great teacher. As a young teacher at BHS, often I had lunch with the football coaches and got to know Don. One day we were joking that the school was better off because a notorious troublemaker had quit. Don remarked, “ That kid didn’t fail us, we failed him.” That stuck with me and I remembered Don’s wisdom during my 42 years in education at the school and college levels whenever I dealt with a troubled student. Thanks Coach Ault. You changed a lot of people and made them better.


Jim Tarbet posted on 3/2/21

A good teacher, great coach and a wonderful human being. DEB & DON - my thoughts & prayers to out to both of you.


Jack Chiesa posted on 3/2/21

Debbie and Donnie- I am so sorry for your loss. Coach Ault was a great coach, and an even better person. He recruited me, coached me and brought me back as a grad assistant during some rough times for me. About 10 former players from the mid 70s Zoom weekly. We spent the last meeting looking at pictures, and telling our Coach Ault stories. Coach made a huge difference in our lives during and after our time at BC. He will be missed, but never forgotten. I’m sure he is already coaching a team in Heaven. God Bless Coach.


Eric Denton posted on 3/1/21

To play for Coach Ault was to respect him and sometimes fear him, but to always love him. I know I am a better man because of his influence on my life while playing for him at the Rock.


Metta Miller posted on 3/1/21

As a cheerleader at Bellaire High School and Bethany College, I got to "cheer on" Coach Don Ault for several seasons. He and my father, BHS teacher Sherwood F. Miller, were friends and fishing buddies. I only hope they are launching that boat on a peaceful heavenly lake right now. Godspeed, Coach.


Bob Fialkowski posted on 3/1/21

To the family of Coach Ault, In order to graduate from Bethany we had to take written as well as oral exams.Coach Ault was on the team as part of my oral exams.I am certain to this day that Coach asked questions that I could answer well.I am grateful to Coach Ault.He was a legendary Coach as well as a great person.


Chuck Grosso posted on 3/1/21

"A man who was previous as time"...I join so many of my football brothers when I say Coach Don Ault made be a better athlete and person. While my time at Bethany on the gridiron was special for 4 years, it was the times and moments for years after, that we shared, up to his passing, that has life long memories. He was a special man, full of wisdom, insight and kindness. To have shared those special moments over the years, has been a gift from God that I will always covet. I love you Coach - May you rest in eternal peace. Forever your #20


jeff mattich posted on 3/1/21

Sorry for your loss Donnie and Deb...Coach's Friday night pep talks were the best.... had us ready to run thru walls... he referred to players girlfriends as "little ugly girls", ... I could go on and on about the great memories...when the offense wasn't practicing well, he'd walk down to the D practice and say "better shut 'em out this weekend boys, because best we can hope for is a 0-0 tie"..... he knew how to bring out the best of young men.... he knew how to balance football, school , and life.... and influenced many lives.... if not for his health, would have been a successful D1 coach. Their loss was Bethany's gain. RIP Coach...


Michael Furda ‘86 posted on 3/1/21

I will FOREVER remember my time with Coach Ault! From my initial campus visit, to the day I received my diploma! When coach passed you by and said “How you doing, big man?, your response had better be: GREAT!” Well, I’m STILL doing great, Coach! GODSPEED!


Tom Wilson posted on 3/1/21

Like my Brother, Joe Merhaut wrote I was given a chance to play college football at the Rock thanks to Coach Ault. He was a friend and former coach with my Dad, so I was given a shot. I will never forget Coach Ault for that experience.


Connie Crozier Bobo posted on 3/1/21

Coach was the kind of man that you wanted to live forever. He was everything good. He impacted thousands of lives with his touch and will be missed so very much.


Tim Fletch Henningsen posted on 3/1/21

Debbie and Don, I am sorry for the loss of your Father. He was a great coach. He will be missed.


Denny Williams posted on 3/1/21

Words cannot express my appreciation for Don and his positive influence on my life. He made me a better player, but also a better man. Along with my 1980 Bison brothers, I am proud to be part of his Bethany legacy. #86


Gary Charmel posted on 3/1/21

A great coach coach, teacher, mentor, and one of the most unique and interesting individuals I have had the pleasure of knowing. He taught you everything you knew about football but not everything he knew because it was impossible to absorb everything he knew about the game. Humble but prideful, accomplished but approachable, lion hearted but he had a heart of gold, a man of character who was a character, there will never be another coach Don Ault. And I am a better man for having had the privilege of knowing him and playing for him. RIP Big Man.


Billy Ray Perkins posted on 3/1/21

Fond memories of Coach Ault from the time I met him until he left SRU. Hard-nosed and tough coach - he expected high speed, physical play and worked every day to get that out of us. He will be missed! Condolances to his family.


Mark Tobler posted on 2/28/21

The memories are great of Coach Ault.


Mark Freshwater posted on 2/28/21

Its difficult to appropriately articulate how positive of an impact Coach Ault had on so many who came in contact with him as a player, colleague, and friend. He had a special way of teaching basic principles and fundamentals regarding winning both on and off the field. Coach Ault's knowledge, commitment, work ethic, passion, and belief in his players left a lasting impression for which I am forever grateful. He truly made you believe that anything was possible. Thank you Coach!!! May you rest in peace "big fella" and may god bless your family.


Don Wilson posted on 2/28/21

Coach Don Ault was the greatest mentor I ever had. His teachings enabled me to enjoy a successful head coaching career of 32 consecutive seasons. His influence touched the lives of all those players.


Joe Merhaut posted on 2/28/21

Coach Ault gave me a chance to play at Slippery Rock University. I was under sized and we both knew it. He knew I was a player and gave me a chance. I became a starter and eventually Captain of The Rock football team in 1988. Coach gave me my start and I am forever grateful. Rest In Peace Coach.


Ed Robinson posted on 2/28/21

Coach Ault finished his head coaching career at Barberton (OH) High School from 1987-1990 continuing his legacy and further building a coaching tree that has too many branches to mention. His relationships with young men whether they be members of his teams or coaching staffs built character and changed the course of lives! He was truly a legend in X’s and O’s and in teaching. God Bless men like Coach Ault!


Byron Thoburn posted on 2/28/21

Great coach. Better Man. RIP


Sandy Trigg Marling (Class of 1964) posted on 2/28/21

I knew Coach when I went to Bellaire High School. I used to help him type his letters to various schools etc. He always had a wonderful smile and treated everyone he knew with respect and guided our teams to titles. I send my condolences to his family and friends.