Norm Foster

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Norm Foster was born in the Allegany County community of Obi, and excelled in football, basketball, and track during his years at Portville High School.

Following his graduation in 1949, Foster attended Cortland State, where he was a multisport athlete, participating in football, soccer, lacrosse, wrestling, and track. He served as the captain of the football team, and was honored with the Outstanding Physical Education Award. After graduating from Cortland in 1953, he became a lieutenant in the Marines, bravely serving his country for two years in the Pacific arena.

Following his military service, Foster taught physical education and coached wrestling, football, and track at Iroquois High School. His wrestling teams were a dynasty, and won 10 straight Section VI titles – with a New York State record of  143 consecutive wins from 1957-66. More than 50 years later, that streak is currently the 3rd longest in the United States.

Foster moved to Amherst High School from 1965 until his retirement in 1991.  He coached football, wrestling, and track, and enjoyed coaching his five sons. In 1982, he became a deacon in the Diocese of Buffalo and served many parishes, schools, hospitals, and nursing homes across WNY.

Foster became the first president of the WNY Wrestling Coaches Association and chairman of ECIC and Section VI Wrestling. His pioneering leadership during the course of his career played a pivotal role in the development of wrestling at both local and state levels.

Foster was inducted into the New York State Wrestling Coaches Hall of Fame (1982), the Iroquois Hall of Fame (1985, 1st inductee), the National Wrestling Hall of Fame (1999), the Cortland State Hall of Fame (2001), the WNY Wrestling Coaches  Hall of Fame (2004, inaugural class), the Section VI Wrestling Hall of Fame (2004), the Amherst High School Hall of Fame (2017), and the Portville High School Hall of Fame (2021).

Norm Foster passed away in 2023 at the age of 92.