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Ivan George ‘Doc’ Mears Dies; Teacher, Coach at L.A. Baptist

Ivan George Mears of Granada Hills, who coached athletics at Los Angeles Baptist Junior/Senior High School from its opening in 1962 until his retirement in 1990, died Tuesday of a heart attack. He was 69.

A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday in the gymnasium at the high school in North Hills, where he taught full time for 28 years and continued as a substitute for years in retirement. The school’s football field bears his name.

Known as “Doc” Mears--because of his doctorate in education from USC--the teacher was one of six faculty members when the private school started classes with 78 students in 1962. The school now has 41 faculty members and 800 students.

“Some people think I’m an institution around here,” Mears said in an interview after his retirement party. In appreciation of his service to the school, faculty and students had a Doc Day look-alike contest and tapped Mears to pick the winner.

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“I’m not known as the most fashionable guy around,” Mears said. “One faculty member had the best potbelly; he had a skinned head thing on; he had the white socks and he had a thermos--I mean, everything was great.”

Mears is survived by his wife, Iris; five children, June Driedger, Julie-Ann McFann, Jan Cooper, John Mears and Jill Warden, and four grandchildren. Private services will be held today at Forest Lawn Memorial-Park, Hollywood Hills. In lieu of flowers, the family asked that donations be made to the Dr. Ivan Mears Scholarship Fund at the school.


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