As a football player PHS grad Pete Buchanan held the state career rushing record for 14 years after his graduation in 1977 rushing for 5,972 yards in his four years at PHS. He scored 69 touchdowns and ran for over 200 yards in a game nine times including the Rockies State Championship win over Jasper his senior year. He also had the highest number of points for tackles and assists in a state championship game and was an All American in 1977, on both offense and defense and in 2000 was inducted into the Indiana Football Hall of Fame.
Just for good measure he was also a member of the National Honor Society.
As impressive as his football career was, Pete has had many more successes in life that mean as much. One is a marriage to wife Kathy (McClure) that has lasted for nearly 40 years.
“I guess we were meant for each other,” he said. “We started dating when we were freshman. It’s really kind of unbelievable really. We still get along fabulously. We have always been able to communicate and we seem to be on the same page on almost everything – how to raise our kids, how we see the world, everything. It’s really pretty cool.”
“I’m really, really proud of all of my kids,” said Pete. “Caitlin is a Notre Dame graduate and in dental school at Florida. Allison is working on a graduate degree in accounting at Florida State and has a job at Price, Waterhouse, Cooper when she graduates. Courtney is a sophomore at Florida State and also studying accounting.”
Pete’s son John is a lot like his father. A 6’4″, 250 pound high school senior football standout and three sport athlete John recently made a tough choice.
“He had some Division I football offers at places like Marshall or East Carolina,” said Pete. “He decided he’s not going to play football in college. He doesn’t want to go to school at those places and would rather go someplace and get the degree he wants. I support that decision 100 percent.
“I love watching him play because he always works his butt off at whatever he’s doing. He’s a good football player but he’s a great kid and a great guy and I think that’s what makes me most proud of him.”
Those lessons learned on the field have been useful in Pete’s successful business career. A Vice President at Bateman, Gordon and Sands his company specializes on risk management for construction companies. They’ve been able to weather the economic hard times in south Florida without a lot of trouble but it hasn’t been easy for others.
“Really the toughest part is watching clients you’ve worked with for years struggle,” said Pete. “Some of our clients went out of business but most of them have been able to scratch to survive. Since January things have started to come around so hopefully that continues.”
“I learned a lot of things playing football it’s really hard to pin one down. I know it’s kind of cliché but it’s like they say ‘The harder I practice the luckier I get.’ Some things do fall into place but you don’t get something for nothing. Work your tail off and be a good person. That’s the advice I’d give anybody.”
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