By: J. Daniel Pearson
Photo Cred: Angie Redman
Dwayne Webb, a well-known, well-respected, and well-loved member of the Osceola County athletic community passed away this past Monday after a battle with colon cancer. He was 60-years-old.
Webb spent more than 30 years coaching in county schools, including the last 10 at Gateway where he worked with the defensive backs and also coached girls’ weight lifting. He was also a physical education teacher at the school. His other coaching stops included Osceola, Poinciana, and St. Cloud – where he was a basketball and football assistant before moving to Gateway.
“He was an incredible asset both to me personally and to Gateway High School,” Panther head coach Marlin Roberts said. “I remember some tough losses a few years ago where we were just manhandled and Coach Webb just said, ‘I will get them in the weight room and get them stronger’ and he did exactly that. Our playoff run a few years back was a direct reflection of his efforts. His passing is a devastating loss for anyone he touched during his coaching career —he was a great friend, a great coach, and a great teacher.”
With the help of Webb, Gateway made the post-season three times in four years, including 2015 and 2017-18.
Roberts said what made Webb unique was his ability to mix discipline, education, and hard work while still having fun. “He had his share of fun with the players before or after practice, but when he was on the field he was all business,” Roberts said. “More than anything, he was a teacher. He not only told them how to do things, but he would also get down in the dirt and show them how.”
He added that Webb was also a great resource as his mentor. “I hired him as my assistant but frankly, when he spoke, I listened – not the other way around. He gave me such great advice on how to coach and relate to both the players and staff,” Roberts said.
Other coaches shared similar feelings.
“Coach Webb was a high energy coach that I had the privilege working with for one season at Osceola on Greg Johnson’s staff,” former Kowboys head coach Doug Nichols said. “He was a great football guy and we stayed in touch during the years. I always admired his drive and his love for working with and helping players.”
Chad Ansbaugh, who now coaches girls’ basketball and tennis at St. Cloud, worked with Webb in the 2000s. “There are a few coaches that literally give everything they have to their school and their kids and Coach Webb was one of those guys,” Ansbaugh said. “What those coaches are given in return for that as far as material things is questionable. But one thing those coaches are given is respect and that lasts forever. Coach Webb has earned that respect and love forever.”
A native of Upper Marlboro, Md., Webb played college football at Florida A&M, where he lettered four years at fullback. A go-fund me page has been established by Angie Redmen, owner of Cobblestone Courtyard in St. Cloud, to help the Webb family with medical bills. The address is https://www.gofundme.com/f/9au4sm-help-coach-beat-cancer.