From Detroit to Bismarck: Longtime Bismarck Public School employee retires
Thirty Bismarck Public Schools employees are retiring this year. From teachers, cooks, custodians and coaches; they have a combined 687 years of experience.
Among them is Cy Timmons, who is retiring after more than three decades as detention supervisor at Bismarck High School.
Watching game film from 1972 is a trip down memory lane for Timmons.
"This is unreal. Look how skinny I was!" he exclaims while watching highlights from his college basketball career.
Sports brought him to Bismarck.
"I was recruited to Bismarck Junior College in 1972 to play basketball and baseball. Being from Detroit in 1972 I wanted to get away from there. It was becoming a very bad place to live," explains Timmons.
Timmons spent two years at Bismarck Junior College; he was even crowned King of the Frost Festival. Timmons went on to play basketball at Mary College. He also earned his teaching degree and has been teaching in Bismarck and Mandan since 1977.
"In 1985 I got my first coaching job at BHS as sophomore girls basketball coach," he recalls.
In 1988, he was hired as detention supervisor at Bismarck High.
"I've gone through six principals at BHS and thousands of students. I demand respect. But I also respect those that I work with, kids and staff. If the students are willing to listen and try I really think that's the biggest thing that I enjoy the most." said Timmons.
He enjoys coaching too and is happy to share the stories behind photos of some of his teams.
"We did pretty good," he said.
He was an assistant coach for the Demons in 1991, the year the girls won the state basketball title.
"I told the girls if we win it all I'll let you shave my head," he remembers with a laugh.
In 2000, he made the switch to middle school basketball.
"That's Dexter Werner. I had the privilege of coaching Dexter," he said while looking at old photos.
He's coached seventy and eighth grade boys and girls for the past 20 years, collecting even more championships.
"This was one of my eighth grade teams when we won the championship," he said, showing us another photo.
But the titles aren't what matter to Timmons. It is the relationships he treasures.
"The kids have just been awesome to be around and to see every day," he said. "I've been blessed and lucky."
And the community has been lucky that a kid from Detroit found a home on the prairie.
"Never in my wildest dreams did I think I'd be here this long," Timmons said.
In retirement, Timmons plans to drive a courtesy car for Bismarck Motor Company. And he'll still be coaching seventh and eighth grade basketball at Wachter Middle School.