Coach leads students on mission trip to Haiti

Richard Essex/Eyewitness News
Lebanon - There are football coaches, and then there are coaches who teach more than football. Kent Wright, the head football coach at Lebanon High School, is leading about half of his varsity team into a disaster area for a lesson for life.
"I decided a long time ago when I became a head football coach, state championships don't come around too often, my idea was to create experiences for kids that are going to last a lifetime," said Coach Kent Wright.
Several members of his football team have signed up for a week of heavy lifting in Haiti. His team is used to tough workouts, but this is the kind of experience that the coach hopes will change his athletes spiritually.
"It is going to be miserable but the way I look at it, we are helping someone and it is truly getting us to see how lucky we are," said Chad Hale, student.
They will travel to a remote village in Haiti to tear down houses with the intention of rebuilding eight houses in two weeks. Rebuilding the homes will mean carrying every piece and every tool through rough terrain.
"I think it will be a trip of a lifetime. Coach has been telling us that a lot - how this is really going to change our lives," said Joe Lane, student.
This is not the first time that Coach Wright has taken a group to a disaster area. Right after Hurricane Katrina he and several members of the Lebanon Christian Church went to New Orleans. This trip to Haiti, according to his players, is just part of this game plan.
"We tell them up front, this is a mission trip. You will hear some religion," said the coach.
Coach Wright does not hide from his faith, nor does he push it. But he does use it to teach lessons.
"With him he has always taught me there are gonna be things in life that you don't want to do and this is one of those things," said Hale.
The players will hold a number of fundraisers to defer part of the $1,000 cost. Each person going is expected to pay $300 and help raise the rest.