Billy Hicks Obituary: The Kentucky high school basketball community is deeply saddened by the loss of a true legend.
The Scott County coroner confirmed his passing on December 3 at the age of 71.
Billy Hicks, a former high school basketball coach, dedicated an impressive 38 years to coaching high school boys.
He devoted a significant portion of his coaching career, spanning 25 years, to Scott County High School.
Notably, he led the high school to victory with two KHSAA state championships.
In 2019, he retired as the unparalleled leader in wins among Kentucky boys’ basketball coaches.
Hicks’ coaching journey began at his alma mater, Evarts, and progressed through Harlan and Corbin before settling in Scott County.
His remarkable overall record stands at 1,013 wins and 276 losses.
This record serves as a testament to his coaching prowess, which will likely remain unmatched for years to come.
Coach Hicks’ Cause of Death
Billy Hicks passed away shortly after midnight at Georgetown Hospital, as confirmed by the Scott County coroner.
Emergency services were dispatched to Hicks’ residence after 11 p.m. on Sunday, leading to his transport to a Georgetown hospital.
Regrettably, all attempts to save him proved futile. Medical authorities pronounced him dead, citing natural causes as the apparent reason for his death.
Hicks’ departure is especially poignant as it occurred just days before the commencement of the Billy Hicks Classic.
Set to play at Scott County and Great Crossing High School, the tournament was scheduled from December 5 to 9.
And despite the profound loss, the organizers have decided, after careful consideration, to proceed with the Billy Hicks Classic as originally planned.
Family and close friends of Hicks express a shared sentiment that proceeding with the tournament aligns with what he would have wanted.
They believe that honoring his memory through the continuation of the event is a fitting tribute to the game and community he cherished deeply.
Remembering Billy Hicks: Obituary & Social Media Tribute
News of Hicks’ passing swiftly circulated on social media, prompting a flood of tributes and expressions of sorrow.
Upon learning of his death, Scott County Schools issued a brief statement:
KHSAA Commissioner Julian Tacket reflected on Hicks’ legacy, expressing,
“To know Billy was to love Billy. The passion and intensity he instilled in his players were contagious to all of those around him. We had many conversations over the years and his legacy speaks for himself.”
Longtime Herald-Leader high school sports writer Mike Fields offered a poignant tribute, saying,
“RIP, Billy Hicks. A great basketball coach for whom family & fishing better suited his shy nature.”
J.R. VanHoose, Paintsville’s 1998 Kentucky Mr. Basketball, shared a deeply personal reflection, posting,
“Unbelievably horrible news. Coach Hicks was a great man, a great coach and later in my life, a great friend.”
Similarly, in a touching post on Facebook, Hicks’ wife, Betsy, shared her sentiments, stating, “What a difference a day makes the loves of my life.”
Tragically, this marks the second loss for the Hicks family.
Before Billy Hicks, the Hicks family faced the heartbreaking loss of their son, William “Tyler” Hicks.
He died from injuries sustained in a car crash in 2012 at the age of 27.
Currently, his wife Betsy, daughter Ashley Johnson and her husband Jed, as well as his grandson Wyler Nash Johnson, survive Billy Hicks.