After four weeks of waiting, they couldn’t stand it anymore.
“It is heartbreaking what is going on with him and what they are doing to him,” said Carol Tiernan-Williams.
Supporters of coach Tom Mihalovich took to the street, and they spoke out.
“It’s a witch hunt, now,” said Steve Fucaloro, a south side resident.
And they spoke up for a man they call a pillar of the south side community.
“He showed love and discipline, you know,” said Richard Scott, “it’s called tough love.”
“It makes you a better person is what it does,” says Anthony Fucaloro, one of Mihalovich’s former players.
Mihalovich wasn’t there, but wife Lauri was, and inside, she and others pleaded with the Des Moines School Board to let the Lincoln coach speak for himself.
“Some of these allegations made against him, he can prove to you to be false,” she said. “One man’s lie should not be another man’s truth.”
The school board could only listen–it can’t comment on open investigations.
But to some, their silence only adds suspicion.
“They’re either stalling because they’re still trying to dig up something–they have nothing to fire him over,” Tiernan-Williams speculated, “or, perhaps some of the other coaches are not being honest with him and dredging up falsehoods that of course they have to investigate.”
Mihalovich supporters say the suspension has had too much collateral damage.
“I think it is hurting,” Scott said. “I definitely think it is hurting. And I think you can see it on the field, and you definitely can see it in the community.”
And they hope that a hundred voices of support will help dilute those who spoke against him.
“I just hope that the school board tonight helped,” Lauri Mihalovich said, “that they’ll listen and give him an opportunity, a fair opportunity to hear him.”