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Todd Cox Receives 2019 Doc Hyde Award
An Award To The Person Who Enhances Sailing In Oriental
January 17, 2020

T
he Doc Hyde Award began in 1998. It honors Robert Hyde, a retired surgeon who fostered sailing activities in Oriental.

The 22nd Annual Doc Hyde Award was presented January 11, presented to Todd Cox, who received a standing ovation from the members of ODC / Oriental Dinghy Club as he received the award. The presentation was done by Jim Edwards. Here are Jim’s words:

Many years ago, there was a man (a retired Orthopedic Surgeon) living in Oriental who was really passionate about all things sailing.

He encouraged sailing and promoted it with an enthusiasm like no other. His enthusiasm was infectious. Over time he got more and more people into their boats and out on the water. He did much to make Oriental the Sailing Capital of North Carolina.

He was said to be the initiator of Wednesday Night Racing in Oriental. It was also said that these races had 20 plus boats out there and were started with a shot gun.

Doc Hyde is no longer with us, but the memory of what he did for sailing in our community lives on. For each of the past 20 years the Sailing Club of Oriental and the Oriental Dinghy Club have jointly honored his memory by awarding the Doc Hyde award to that individual who has demonstrated a similarly high level of promotion of sailing in the Oriental community.

This year’s nomination process was a little different, (I think, because it was my first one)…
Many names came up and even one group (NCO, Nautical Co-Op of Oriental) nothing was unanimous. After much discussion – and this is where the departure from the norm happened – one member of the committee had to be excused.

The discussion resumed and the decision was instantly unanimous.

We invited the member back and proceeded to act out a vote…

ENOUGH about the process….

This year’s recipient fits right in this esteemed group, with his commitment to THE PROMOTION OF SAILING IN THE ORIENTAL COMMUNITY.

He is an lifelong, and some would even say, an inveterate, racer and sailor …

He started sailing at age 5 racing with his father… joined soon by younger siblings, and later by wives, children and grandchildren.

He was a sailing instructor in Rhode Island boasting Kenny Read as one of his students.

While in Vermont he managed the Youth Sailing School for a number of years fostering many young sailors and helping to develop young instructors.

He was educated at St Lawrence University, where he was on their intercollegiate skiing team and where he did a lot of sailing on Lake Champlain.

One of his early Careers, which many do not know about, he was a Marine pilot flying F4 jets off Aircraft Carriers – I have heard from a very reliable source that he was top of his class, was a “BAD ASS” a real life TOP GUN flying many missions in hostile areas.

Once he took off his wings, he stayed in aviation until he decided to retire in Oriental with his wife Lynn.

She shared with me that when actively racing “Good Wood”, their 33’ foot sailboat, he had an epiphany.

He decided, that after a 5 year hiatus from racing his Lightning “Rainbow Rider”, he missed one-design sailing and he was going to buy another boat, a Lightning to add to his fleet … All this, because the North American’s were coming up the next year.  She looked at him with one of “those” looks, and quietly said, “I will support you no matter what you decide, but I must tell you, I think that is one of the most hair-brained ideas you have had in the last 10 years.“  He nodded, went ahead and bought a new Lightning, and named it “Hair-Brained idea.”

Once in Oriental he continued his racing with ODC. He loves racing “One Design” because he enjoys the competition and the learning that comes from excellent sailors captaining similar boats. He has raced 110s, Lightnings, Lasers, Sunfish, and now captains an Etchel named “loon”.

He also competes successfully in major ICRC regattas.

Because he can’t get enough racing with the One Designs, he also races the PHRF boats.

When not sailing, he will probably still be on the water as he is an avid fly fisherman at the “professional level” teaching many people the intricacies of the sport.

Early on with ODC he was a member of the board, then took the helm as Commodore of the club where he has served for the past 3 years… and has said that he would only serve as commodore one more year, but I bet if you twisted his arm, he would serve a few more.

With all this going on… you may wonder how he spends his spare time … it is on the phone recruiting for race committee volunteers.

I could keep going on-and-on but, with no further ado, it is my honor and privilege to present the 22nd Annual Doc Hyde Award to Todd Cox.

In talking with Todd, TownDock.net learned that as well as racing small boats, he is also an experienced offshore sailor. Cox has sailed the Newport to Bermuda race twice, the Annapolis to Newport Race three times. While living on the west coast, Todd sailed the Newport Beach (California) to Ensada (Mexico) race twice.

Todd Cox, by the Etchells sailboats at Sailcraft Marina
The award


Posted Friday January 17, 2020 by Allison DeWeese


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