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July 2, 2014

Former Tupelo coach dies

Collinsville — Former Tupelo coach Mark Campbell died Monday morning in Tulsa. He was 65.

Campbell, who led the Collinsville girls basketball team to the Class 5A State Tournament in his first season with the Lady Cardinals, was battling cancer for the second time, according to the Tulsa World.

He led the Tupelo Tigers to a Class B state title in 1991.

He was diagnosed with a recurrence of colon cancer in January but continued coaching Collinsville through the rest of the season. Campbell underwent surgery to remove a cancerous polyp from his colon in 2011.

“Our whole district is in a somber mood,” Collinsville athletic director Jim Riley told the Tulsa World. “Our girls loved him. This is a tough day.”

Campbell was inducted into the Oklahoma Coaches Association Hall of Fame last summer. Over 33 seasons, he had a combined boys and girls basketball coaching record of 865-357.

Campbell is also known for leading Claremore to three straight Class 5A girls titles in 2003-05. While with the Zebras, he led them to 14 state tournament appearances and two runner-up finishes. In 2013, he was a volunteer assistant at Bixby with his daughter Melody Stewart, who is now coaching Lincoln Christian.

Campbell also led Claremore to two fastpitch softball titles.

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