Ringgold football hero thriving in N. Carolina
CHARLOTTE, N.C. – When the Mon Valley last knew of Harry McCullough, he was an effervescent teenager was making one of the biggest defensive plays in Ringgold football history.
It was in November 1982 and the Rams were playing in the WPIAL Quad A Division II championship game against favored New Castle.
Ringgold was clinging to a 6-3 lead in the fourth quarter. However, sitting on the Rams’ 1-yard-line, the Hurricanes were threatening to take the lead and the championship.
On an attempted dive play into the end zone, McCullough stripped the New Castle runner of the football and then recovered the loose ball to preserve the school’s only Quad A football crown.
That was then. This is now.
Today, McCullough, 38, is older, wiser and transplanted from Monongahela, living in Charlotte, N.C.
However, as he was once an effervescent teen, McCullough is now an effervescent adult.
“I’m still the same,” he laughed. “I’m still a single guy who likes to do my own thing.”
McCullough’s trek from Monongahela, where his mother, Terry McCullough, still lives, began after he graduated from Ringgold in 1983.
“I went to Southern University to further my football career, but that didn’t work out as well as I had hoped,” he said.
Still, McCullough graduated from Southern and then moved to Charlotte in search of employment.
Eventually, he hooked up with the North Carolina Department of Transportation, when he has been a highway construction inspector for the past 14 years.
“It’s like PennDOT, except that it’s NCDOT,” he said. “I guess there’s a ‘DOT’ everywhere, huh?”
His job requires that he inspect newly constructed highways and it is a vocation that has served him well.
“I’m doing pretty good here,” he said. “I just bought a new house and I do a lot of traveling. I’ve been to Mexico several times and I have trips planned to Santo Domingo, Amsterdam and Australia. I love to travel.”
McCullough says he has yet to find the right person to inspire him to settle down. It was the same way back in high school.
“I’m not married and I’m not close to being married,” he said, laughing.
“I still have some traveling to do. Maybe on my travels I’ll find the right person.”
“Man, I’m just going along like I always have,” he said. “I’m just being me.”
Which, for 38 years, has been a lot of fun.