John Seal arrived at HHS in 1973, fresh out of Appalachian State University, to take over a wrestling team that had been in existence only two years. Over the next 18 years Coach Seal’s Blue Streaks became a powerful program, dominating the Valley District, and they were a perennial contender at the regional and state levels.
His HHS teams won 13 of 15 Valley District championships and were state runners-up in 1979. His teams won 145 dual matches during this time and Blue Streak wrestlers won 26 state individual place awards, including 7 individual state champions and 4 state runners-up. From 1973 – 1983 Coach Seal served as an assistant football coach on the highly successful HHS teams of that era.
He also coached the boys’ tennis team from 1987-1991, winning the state championship in 1991. He also coached an individual state champion and two state champion doubles teams. John also coached the 1986 softball team to a 2nd place finish in the district.
Coach seal retired from coaching in 1991 but continued to serve the city schools as a central office administrator until his retirement in 2003. In addition to his undergraduate degree from Appalachian State, John received a Master’s Degree from JMU. In 1993, the Department of Kinesiology at JMU recognized him with their “Outstanding Professional” Award. In 2002 the National Wrestling Hall of Fame honored Coach Seal with its “Lifetime Service to Wrestling” Award.