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Gary Grey: Club Manager and Swimming Coach

Came to the SPTC in a response to an ad in the Sunday newspaper searching for a “Club Manager and Swimming Coach”.  Thinking that  this was a rather “interesting” and a “really different” combination, he interviewed and accepted the job from then President Pat Brynteson.  The understanding was that this was probably going to be just a short-term, try-it-and-see, position. He is known simply as “Gary” to both young and old around the club and is now starting his 33rd year at the S.P.T.C. Things obviously worked out better than anticipated.

Born in Chicago, Illinois, raised in Rockford, Illinois, he has been involved in competitive swimming since the age of 12 and has used swimming as a vehicle through Junior H.S., High School, and college.  Gary swam and lettered in swimming four years at the University of Iowa.  Following graduation in 1965, he followed the teaching/coaching trail which led him to Clinton, Iowa, Deerfield, Illinois, back to the University of Iowa for graduate school and then to Eisenhower High School in Hopkins, Minnesota.  His Hopkins swimmers won four Minnesota State Titles and produced 22 High School All-American swimmers during that time frame.  With the closing of Eisenhower High School, his HS coaching career pretty much came to an end although he remained active in A.A.U. (now USS) swimming for several years after that.  Gary retired from teaching in 2002 after 38 exciting years in teaching, 31 of them in the Hopkins School System. 

Gary is married to his wife Lynn (a wonderful, small-town Iowa girl and avid Hawkeye fan) and they celebrated their 51st anniversary this past December. They have two daughters; Heidi (the first) and Alyson (the last). Heidi is vice president of Optum Health Education (United Health Group), and with her husband Mark and daughter Alex, now live and work out in Tampa, Florida.  Alyson and her husband Jeremey (and 3-kids) live in St. Michael; both teach in the Osseo School District.  Four grandchildren keep the grandparents active, busy, worn-out, and eternally aware of just why it is that young people have kids.