Tributes are paid to top-class coach
Date published: 22 May 2012
Teacher left his mark on basketball and football
A POPULAR PE teacher has died following a two-year battle with cancer.
Yaro Martyniuk (61), who slam-dunked his way to 100 trophies as a basketball coach and set up the Oldham Celtics Basketball Club in the 1980s, died at Dr Kershaw's Hospice on May 17.
The father-of-three, from Lewisham Close, Royton, had been head of PE at the former St Alban's RC High School, in Warren Lane, for over 30 years before moving to St Augustine's RC High School.
Until recently he was a football referee with the Lancashire FA and had also taught business studies at Marple Sixth Form College.
Not only was he the former captain of the Ukrainian Lions soccer team in the Oldham Sunday League, he also became head coach of national league basketball side Bolton Fine Ceramics.
Alongside Pat O'Donnell, he helped form Oldham Celtics Basketball Club, which went on to set a number of records, two of which were seasonis best statistics for the whole of the National Basketball League.
Mr Martyniuk also coached eight players who went on to play for England at various levels.
Stefan Moroz, who invited Mr Martyniuk to be best man at his wedding, said: "He was a very generous and loyal man, firm but fair.
"He had a great respect for authority and, of course, enjoyed great success in sport, including getting some of his students to play basketball at a national level."
Mr Martyniuk leaves his wife Margaret and three children, Alexander, Daniel and Alex.
His funeral takes place at 9.30am on Friday at the Ukrainian Catholic Church of St Peter & St Paulis & All Saints, in Chadderton Way, followed by interment at Greenacres Cemetery.
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