A staple on the sidelines for city sports events for almost 40 years, Dr. Ben Garza was recognized by his peers over the weekend, receiving the Distinguished Service Award from the Rio Grande Valley Sports Hall of Fame. The induction ceremony for the latest Hall class was held at Victoria Palms in Donna Friday night and Garza, who has been the team doctor for Edinburg high schools and The University of Texas-Pan American for 38 years, led off the festivities.

Accompanied by his wife Patty, “Dr. Ben,” as he is known, was introduced by Richard Flores, long-time EHS coach and athletic director, who shared some humorous stories about his relationship with Garza, a man he’s known for over 60 years.

The class included football luminaries Tommy Cox of La Feria; Lum Wright, who coached at Edcouch-Elsa and Mission; Tommy Roberts, who coached at Port Isabel and San Benito; and Sonny Detmer, who spent nine years at Mission. Baseball greats inducted were long-time Bronc player and coach Reggie Tredaway, Pharr/PAU catcher Pete Bazan, and coach Hector Salinas, who led four programs in South Texas, including Texas Southmost College in Brownsville.

The RGV Sports Hall has been around for 22 years, and includes a number of locals. Below is the list of inductees with ties to Edinburg:

- Nayo Anzaldua, softball 2004

- Dr. Charles Beaudry, track and field 1989

- Jim Brooks, sports administration 1990

- Bobby Cannon, football, baseball 1989

- Ramon Cantu, baseball 1995

- Max Cavazos, officiating 1991

- Dr. Thomas Esparza, youth sports 1991

- Carlos Esquivel, football 1998

- Camilo Estevis, baseball 1995

- Bill Farris, tennis 1990

- Joe Filoteo, basketball, 2008

- Fito Flores, football 1992

- Richard Flores, football 1992

- Gil Garza, football, 2006

- Luke Jackson, basketball 1995

- Homer Martinez, track and field 2002

- David Mosqueda, officiating 1993

- Al Ogletree, baseball 1989

- Dr. Mary Lee Rabke, women’s sports 1997

- Joe Rodriguez, football, baseball 1991

- Lupe Salinas, baseball 2003

- Earl Scott, football, 1989

- Dr. Amnilda Thomas, several sports, 1992

- Robert Vela, football, 2008

- Vic Villarreal, boxing, 2001

- Andy White, track and field 1999

- Jim Wright, football 1993