Ray McCormick is a great conservationist in his own right. The Knox County Farmer is former chairman of the Indiana Soil and Water Conservation Districts. The group held its annual conference recently in Indianapolis. McCormick is also an Indiana Master Farmer.
McCormick took the stage to tell an interesting story during the awards luncheon at the conference.
"We celebrate the miracle of Milan and the shot heard around the world every winter," he says. "This year is the 60th anniversary of the shot Bobby Plump made that helped Milan, a tiny school in Ripley County, beat a basketball powerhouse nearly 20 times its size in enrollment for the Indiana State Basketball State Championship."
McCormick didn't say this, but that was back when "basketball was basketball." There were no divisions, and if you won the big game, you were king of the hill, no matter what size of school you had. (Yes, that was an editorial comment!)
It's been nearly 30 years since the movie Hoosiers was made to document what Milan did 60 years ago. All of it has become part of Hoosier basketball lore.
McCormick used this introduction to honor someone else from Ripley County. "Now Milan is known for something besides basketball," he says. "It's known as the hometown of Jeff Meinders. Jeff has served two years as president of IASWCD, and has been instrumental in helping move the organization forward and in helping the soil conservation movement in Indiana."
Meinders worked through the ranks of officers and has served eight years in a leadership position for IASWCD. He now becomes the past president, and will still be called upon for advice and guidance. McCormick touted him for being an excellent role model for others who are interested in soil conservation, and for providing strong leadership during his time in state IASWCD offices.