‘Remember the Titans’ coach Herman Boone dies

Herman Boone, the tough, no-nonsense high school football coach played by Denzel Washington in “Remember the Titans,” has died. He was 84.

Boone was the former head coach of the T.C. Williams High School 1971 championship football team in Alexandria, Virginia.

Boone passed away Wednesday after a battle with cancer, surrounded by friends and family, Alexandria City Public Schools confirmed.

The coach will be forever remembered for leading a team of white and black football players during the integration of Alexandria’s high schools. His persona as an assertive, rallying force was immortalized in the Disney movie from 2000.

“He touched many lives and hearts across the world. He was inspirational for so many people, including me as one of his former students. Alexandria City Public Schools was fortunate to have him as an icon at such a critical time in our history. He will be dearly missed,” Superintendent Gregory C. Hutchings Jr. said in a statement.

In 1971, at a time of lingering racial turmoil, the Alexandria school board decided to integrate the upper grades of two all-white high schools with T.C. Williams, which had all black students, according to ACPS.

Boone was the school’s first African American head coach, the school district said. He met obstacles early on, working alongside another legendary coach.

The school hired Bill Yoast, who was white, as the team’s defensive coach. Yoast was the coach at Francis C. Hammond High School, where 99% of its students were white, according to