Chris Bourne started his wrestling career in 6th grade intramural and then progressing up to the junior high level at East Rochester High School. As a junior high wrestler, he remembers watching the varsity team working out and wrestling—it was then that he immediately knew that he wanted to wrestle for Hall of Fame coach Don Quinn. Chris experienced a stellar high school career under Quinn and would go on to Cortland State where he was a 2-time runner-up in the SUNYAC Conference and a finalist at the New York State Collegiate Championships.
His coaching career paralleled and surpassed his career as a wrestler. In 1980, he took over the reins at Wayne Central School where he coached until 1990 and won 4 league championships. In 1982, his Wayne Eagles team was crowned the Section V champions. Coach Bourne was named Section V Class B Coach of the Year twice and the Section V Class A Coach of the Year Award once. Following Wayne, Chris worked two years as the head coach at Canandaigua and then became an Athletic Director. He has also served as the Section V Wrestling Class Chairman, Section V State Wrestling Coordinator and functioned several years as the Assistant State Coordinator.
Section V Wrestling Chairman William Hadsell, who followed Chris as the state wrestling chairperson, has the greatest of respect for Chris. Bill shared this about Chris which truly exemplifies the impact that Chris has had on wrestling in Section V. “I cannot tell you how much of an influence Chris has had on wrestling in Section V. To experience how Chris handles people and difficult situations is remarkable. The respect that Chris gets when he walks into a room is something that has been earned through a lifetime of work.” Frank Marotta, member and officer of the Upstate New York Chapter of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame, indicated that Chris has always been willing to step in and assist with all situations regarding Section V wrestling. Chris has stepped in to help his friend Scott Freichlag in his time of need and took over for Lou Lombardo when he was ill. Marotta stated, “Chris has been instrumental to the success of Section V wrestling as a coach and administrator.”
Chris’ outstanding careers as a coach and athletic director has resulted in him being selected for the Section V Hall of Fame, East Rochester Hall of Fame, Wayne Wrestling Hall of Fame and being placed on the Brockport Central School’s Wall of Honor. Hall of Famer, Scott Freischlag, said this about Chris: “Chris has served as a leader and catalyst for change in all the roles that he has filled over the years, and he has always placed the interest of the sport of wrestling foremost while serving.”
Chris and his wife, Debra, make their home in Spencerport and are the proud parents of four children—Michael, Kristen, Nicole and Byran.
Chris’ hard work, dedication and commitment to wrestling in Section V and New York State makes him a great choice for being enshrined in the Upstate New York Chapter’s Hall of Fame located at the National Wrestling Hall of Fame in Stillwater, Oklahoma.
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New York - Upstate
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