John Gunther moved from Springfield Illinois at age 10, to Bernalillo NM. John attended Bernalillo High School, playing football, tennis, and running track. After garnering a coaching position on JV in 2006, he immediately knew this was his dream job, and continued to work hard to become the head coach at Sandia High School. John has led Sandia into the state finals in 2012 & 2013. What is remarkable is the impact John has had on his players and students despite his battle with cancer. Having been coaching for 21 years his life, having impact off the field and on, can be witnessed by his continuous contacts with former players, students and parents of both. His official record is 88-49 at the time of his retirement.
Johns epic coaching journey of being a teacher at Sandia High School teaching math began and when his oldest son Robert turned 5, started coaching him at Mile High Little League, instantly falling in love with working with children and affecting their lives through youth sports. As John grew into the role of coach, and having many great influences in his life in David Hendrick and others his goal of working with high school children became utmost in his life. He realized that kids are young people who like anyone else, need to have someone love them, listen to them, and respect them. John had the deep and abiding ability to love, especially those who felt less-loved. John attended every event there was, swimming, tennis, golf, attending chorus, All-State events, funerals, and hospitals, Pageant of the Bands, to show his students that he cared about them and loved them.
John believed in his heart that building relationships with students, colleagues, even competitors was healthy and fit right into his belief system. His consistent hard-nosed work ethic in the classroom and on the baseball diamond is evident in the results from his 17 years of results from teaching and coaching. His attention to detail in his job with teaching critical thinking skills, but more importantly getting to know his kids, sharing with his students and getting to know them just by listening to them and caring.
John is a member of the NM High School Coaches Association. As he has been battling cancer, the way he carries himself and his continuous contributions to High School athletics in New Mexico as a coach, teacher and as a mentor- of which he is unmatched.
John Gunther exhibits each and every thing, that identifies someone as a fantastic mentor, his unwavering ethical approach to baseball, his absolute attention to moral behavior, the way he carries himself as an example to his student/athletes and his never ending respect for the athletes, the game, his opponents and his love for education, on and off the field- make him one of the most special people to have walked onto a diamond.
John worked on the B2 Bomber project, and attending school at University of New Mexico, John earned his Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education, and subsequently earned his Master’s in education from UNM. John and his wife Shari have four children, Brittney, Robert, David, and Sarah.