John Francis Essic


Francis Essic was born May 29, 1925 in Davie County, NC.  He attended Appalachian State on a basketball and baseball scholarship.  He served in France and Italy during WWII and returned to Appalachian to graduate and earn his masters in School Administration.  He played professional Minor League baseball from1947-49 and 1952.  He then coached basketball at Wingate and Pfeiffer College.  In 1967-8, he served as President of Civitan International.   Then, in 1969, he became the business manager of the Carolina Cougars in Charlotte.  Mr. Essic has been inducted into 5 sports halls of fame (Mr. Airy, Surry County, Davidson County, Gaston County and Pfeiffer College) and is featured in the Legends Lobby at Wingate College.  He is retired as owner and manager of Essic Sports Shop in Gastonia, NC after over 25 years.  He is married to Mary Lou Freeman Essic for 68 years and counting.  They have one daughter, Martha Williard, one granddaughter and two great grandchildren.