Francis Marion University athletic officials have announced that former men's cross country runner and track and field athlete David Stafford will be the newest inductee into the FMU Athletic Hall of Fame.
The induction ceremony will take place during Homecoming activities on Saturday, Feb. 17. The ceremony will occur at approximately 3:45 p.m. in the Smith University Center gymnasium, between the women's and men's games of the FMU and Georgia College & State University basketball doubleheader.
A native of Hanahan, Stafford was a member of the inaugural Patriot cross country squad in 1976, missed the 1977 season with an injury, and ran again in 1978. He was also a member of the FMU track and field team for four years (1976-79).
He earned the B.S. degree in sociology in 1980 and now resides in Summerville. He has been employed by Federal Express since 1983.
Each of his years on the cross country squad, he was named the team most valuable player, won the NAIA District Six individual championship (time of 26:15 in 1976 and 25:32 in 1978), was named to the All-District Team, and helped the Patriots to the District Six team title. As a senior, he set the FMU course record with a time of 25:34.
On the track, he earned team most valuable player honors twice (1976 and 1978) and helped Francis Marion to a four-year team record of 86-18. The Patriots finished second at the District Six championship meet in 1977 and 1978 and placed fourth in 1976.
He was named to the All-District track and field squad in 1979 for his accomplishments in the 880-yard dash and as part of the mile relay team. By the end of his junior year, he held four school records: 880-yard dash, mile run, 3-mile run, and 6-mile run. His record time of 4:17.2 in the mile run still stands today. Ten years after he graduated, he still stood fourth on the all-time FMU track and field points list with 388.
Stafford joins 30 current members in the FMU Athletic Hall of Fame, which was formed in 1991.