On This Day in UB History: May 14 (Buddy Labor)

buddylabor300On May 14, 1988, John Buddy Labor graduated from Huntington College with a degree in Business. He was from Bumpe, Sierra Leone. His father, John Labor, was principal of Bumpe High school and a longtime leader in Sierra Leone Conference.

Buddy was born in Huntington on January 30, 1964, when his father was a student at Huntington College. The next day, in the same hospital, Tom Datema was born. They would be friends in Sierra Leone, and teammates at Huntington College.

Buddy Labor was, few people would dispute, HC’s best-ever soccer player. His number 10 jersey was retired on February 23, 1988, even before he graduated. A four-time all-American from 1984-87, Buddy held many HC soccer records: most goals scored in a game (4), most goals scored in a season (28), most goals scored in a career (100), most assists in a career (32), most points in a career (232), and most points in a game (10). He was the team MVP all four years.

The various collegiate athletic organizations recognized him.

  • NAIA. All-district team all four years, honorable mention All-America 1984-85, second-team All-America 1986, and first-team All-America 1987.
  • NCCAA. All-America from 1984-87, during which he ranked among the top ten goal scorers all four years.
  • NCAA District III. All-District 1984-87. The 1986 team placed fourth nationally in the NCCAA.

Buddy Labor was inducted into the Huntington University Hall of Fame on December 1, 2001. He now lives in Atlanta and is a sales account manager for NexTraq.

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