The Lake Pro: Our Neighbor Ward Angle – The Southwest Times
By WILLIAM PAINE
I first met Ward Angle at a Poker Run for Friends of Clayor Lake (FOCL) fundraiser, which started and ended at the Rock House Marina. During my presentation, I learned that Ward Angle was the very first president of FOCL.
As we spoke, Ward looked at Peak Creek and noted that he had built a good number of docks along the shore. It turns out that the reason Angle became the first president of FOCL was related to these docks along the shore.
Ward Angle grew up in Shawsville and attended Shawsville High School, now known as Eastern Montgomery High School.
âMy graduating class had 39 students,â Ward said. âTo say you had to exercise is an understatement. I played baseball and football in high school.
Ward Angle attended NRCC before transferring to Radford University, where he studied Business Administration. Shortly after graduating in 1981, a brother of the fraternity asked Ward if he would like to go to Mexico via Florida.
âI said, okay. Sounds good, âAngle recalls. âWe went straight to Fort Lauderdale and didn’t have a lot of money at the time, but one day when we were filling up with gas, a guy came in and said, ‘Is that that someone wants to work who can drive a shift? “”
Typically, Ward seized the opportunity and accepted the job, himself and his fellow traveler.
Later, he and his college colleague went to Las Vegas and then to Reno, where Ward accepted a money count job at Harrah’s Casino.
âIt was called a coin wrap,â Angle said of his concert at the casino. âYou came in at 11 o’clock in the evening. They took you to the basement where you put all your clothes except your underwear and shoes in a locker. They give you a green jumpsuit with big numbers on the front and back but no pockets. They would take us to the slots and pour those 75 pound buckets of coins into the bags. Then return to the cellar.
A few months passed but Ward got homesick and decided to come back to NRVâ¦ but quickly.
âI rode 1,000 miles on a motorcycle two days in a row,â Ward said. âI slept under a picnic table in a rest area.
Ward Angle started working as a salesperson at Hokey Honda. He married his wife Wanda, who worked as a nurse, on May 3, 1986.
âI bought a little condo in Blacksburg and we hated it,â Ward said. âAt the time, we were keeping our boat in the state park. I said, I want to be on the water.
The following summer, Angle rented the condo in Blacksburg and purchased a small cabin with 55 feet of waterfront at Plantation Estates. Naturally he wanted to build a wharf, but the company that did this sort of thing had a waiting list of over a year. It also cost a lot more than he had expected.
âSo I started to do the math and I said, I can borrow against my house here on the lake and buy a houseboat and bring it up from Smith Mountain Lake,â Angle said.
In 1988, he and a good friend turned business partner formed Precision Docks. Dean Jackson and Mike Ratcliff invited them to assemble the dismantled barge at Conrad Brothers Marine.
To build a quay, a crane with a pile driver is needed to hammer the heavy wooden or steel beams into the mud.
âThe condition for us to buy this threshing machine at Smith Mountain Lake was that we would go and work with them for a week,â Ward said. “So we went down and worked on their barge and they taught us how to use it.”
It was the same year that William Ward Angle III (known as Trey) was born. Their daughter Caitlin was born in 1993.
Ward transferred jobs to Shelor Toyota and the dock construction business was booming, but all was not well on the lake they named after Claytor.
âTo love the lake you have to love what it’s about and then you see all the garbage coming downstream,â Angle said. âWhile skiing, you might see a swollen cow carcass or barrels with unknown substances floating on the water. The cattle, the barrels, the debris and you had the battery factory washout up there on Peak Creek. He was killing fish. It had to be remedied. “
According to Angle, Judy Furr and her husband, Lit Furr, along with her friends at Conrad Brothers Marine were the catalysts for FOCL’s formation.
âThey were looking for someone to kind of spearhead and be the public face of FOCL,â Ward explained. “And what better way to start a cleanup effort than to have the one guy with a barge ready to help out is the president?” “
In 1993, Ward Angle became the first president of FOCL so that he was available to organize periodic lake cleanings and water tests, which have continued to this day.
By the end of the decade, Angle had sold his cabin and moved across the lake to Shiloh, where he and his wife still live.
A few years earlier, Ward had decided to sell Precision Docks to his partner because he saw the potential of working in real estate. In 1999, Angle began working as an apprentice real estate appraiser.
âIt was about crunching the numbers, but I’m more of a social person, so I went back and got my real estate license in 2005,â Ward said. “While on the lake, I could develop a property, give you a price on a dike, give you a price on a boathouse and I can tell you what the rules and regulations are.”
Ward worked for Century 21 before opening Angle Realty in Dublin a few years later.
âSo I went ahead and presented myself as a Lake Pro,â Angle said. âI like being able to educate people. That’s the key, educationâ¦ to let people know what Claytor Lake is.
In 2005, Ward joined the board of directors of the New River Valley Association of Realtors, then became president of that organization in 2010.
âIt was exciting,â Angle said of the experience. “It was a good time.”
When asked what else Ward does to have a good time, he answered without hesitation, “coaching.”
Ward Angle began coaching when the director of the Pulaski County Recreation Department asked if anyone was ready to coach his son’s football team. But long after his son Trey got older, Ward continued to coach.
âI have coached soccer, basketball, women’s softball, fastball softball, footballâ¦ whatever they need, I would help them if I could,â Ward said. âOf course, everything is voluntary.
Angle and Southwest Times editor-in-chief David Gravely, along with others, coached the first team to win a girls’ fastball softball tournament at Randolph Park when it opened. Angle and Gravely teamed up again to win it all, but it cost them both. Gravely must have let the girls shave his head. Angle had to wear a tutu and a tiara. Photos of the event are circulating on social networks. Several players on this team continued to play college softball.
âYou have to go out and make yourself available to people and they see if you care or not,â Ward continued.
Ward Angle coached the Dublin Middle School football team in 2011, 2012, 2013 with his son and worked as an assistant coach for Jack Turner at Auburn the following year.
“So I’ve been at different levels, but what I love the most is coaching 9, 10, 11 and 12 year olds because you can give them life lessons they can’t hear. maybe not otherwise, âAngle said. . “Many of these children are being raised by their grandparents.”
Angle asks players to excel both at school, at home and as a team.
âI said, when you’re at home watching TV, every time there’s an ad you should do 20 push-ups, just to do it,â Ward said. âIf you see your mom going to the kitchen, say, ‘Sit down mom, I’ll have it. So I am able to give a few minutes of life lessons on the right way to do thingsâ¦ what is the wrong way to do things. There are different approaches, but sometimes a man needs to talk to a young man instead of mom. “
Ward started this fall as an assistant football coach for Pulaski County High School, but health issues sidelined him.
âI was there for the practice sessions from 6 am to 8 am and a few times when I got out of my car I felt dizzy and thought to myself that it was not right,â he said. he said.
Ward learned that he had an irregular heartbeat due to congenital heart valve disease. He is currently on medication and his condition is improving.
âI go to the gym quite regularly and do light stuff because I don’t want to think about the alternative,â he said.
Despite being semi-retired, Angle still works as a broker / realtor for Burnette Real Estate in Blacksburg, but he still has plenty of time for other hobbies. Ward is currently restoring a 1930 era Chevrolet five window coupe. Prior to that, he restored a 1930s Ford pickup truck.
âThe bed was rusty, so I just took the dimensions and bought some sheet metal, cut it, welded it and made it as I wanted,â Ward recounted. âI started with a sketch. I want the wheels to be like this. I want the profile to be like this, then I’m going to put it in the garage and look at it and every once in a while I’ll have a few beers watching it and change it.
Ward and his wife Wanda also love to dance Shag when the opportunity arises. Their daughter Caitlin works as a nurse in Wilmington NC and Trey is in the military.
Although Ward Angle left the FOCL board of directors many years ago, the Lake Pro seems more than willing to do whatever it takes to keep the river clean.
âI just loved being near the water,â Ward said. âIt’s just who I am. You have to love it. That’s why I want to come back to FOCL. As long as I’m healthy enough to move around, I’ll do what I can.