The Joe Aimone wrestling tournament was a success


Barb Aimone speaks at the inaugural Joe Aimone Wrestling Invitational in Kemmerer on Dec. 16. Barb’s late husband Joe was a coach and teacher at Kemmerer High. (GAZETTE PHOTO / Theresa Davis)

An open letter to Darrell Bullington, Kemmerer/Diamondville Wrestling, and the community:

Our family has had the opportunity to be part of the Kemmerer-Diamondville community since 1978. Living in and growing up in Kemmerer was a special experience. Kemmererites are proud of their community, schools, and athletics. The Kemmerer and Diamondville communities have produced some great individual athletes as well as successful programs over the years. The tradition created by this community is very apparent. We’ve been proud to call Kemmerer, Wyoming, our home.   

We’ve had the opportunity to come into contact with some great people during our time in Kemmerer. These people range from community members, parents, peers, educators, students and athletes. Our lives were touched differently by each and every person. We often have the privilege of talking with people in the community about stories of Joe. Usually the story starts with something funny said or done by the two parties.  It is followed by a good laugh and is concluded with “Joe was a good guy.” 

He may have been a little rough around the edges, but Joe really loved seeing student-athletes succeed. Winning was important; however, the ultimate goal was to ensure the students and athletes succeeded in life. The thing Joe enjoyed the most was when a person he taught or coached graduated and shared his or her successes in life. 

Now we have an opportunity to visit with some of the people on whom Joe had an impact. Often it brings tears to our eyes knowing how successful some of his former students and athletes have become. Joe would’ve been very proud and would have enjoyed reminiscing of good times.

Recently Darrell Bullington spearheaded a movement to rename the Kemmerer Wrestling Invite the Aimone Wrestling Invitational. Our family was overwhelmed by the gesture.

We appreciate everyone who helped dedicate the tournament. Darrell, the Kemmerer wrestling program, Mr. Thatcher, community volunteers, and the KHS athletic department ran a great tournament.

It was a very nice tribute to Joe. We couldn’t have asked for a better outcome.  Coach Bullington meant a lot to Joe. We know Joe would’ve beamed with pride at how well the tournament was run and how well the Kemmerer wrestlers performed.

Thank you for giving us the opportunity to be a part of this great community. We are very grateful for everyone who’s touched our lives over the years. We are excited to see what lies ahead. Go Rangers!

The family of Joe Aimone

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