Wes Jordan, a Maine native, earned the first of his two degrees
from the university before being hired as head athletic trainer in
1965. During his UMaine career that spanned more than three decades,
Jordan was tapped to be an athletic trainer for teams competing in
the Pan Am Games, and at the XIII Winter Olympics in 1980. He was
inducted into the National Athletic Trainers' Association Hall of
Photos courtesy of
Fogler Library Special Collections
Mark "Rookie" Letendre was 16 when he met the man who changed his life —
long-time University of Maine head athletic trainer Wes Jordan.
In Jordan's youth clinic for aspiring athletic trainers that summer in
1973, Letendre learned the importance of integrity, honesty and a
passion "to do the job right."
Later, as a physical education major at UMaine, Letendre was inspired by
Jordan's knowledge, leadership and ability to communicate.
"He was constantly challenging me," says Letendre, a Major League
Baseball athletic trainer for the past 25 years. "He always had respect
for the status quo and he enjoyed the fun of thinking out of the box."
Hundreds of UMaine students came to know Jordan, considered to be one of
the top athletic trainers in the country. He helped make the dreams of
student-athletes and aspiring athletic trainers a reality. Now, it's
their turn to honor their mentor and role model.
Before his death Feb. 26, 2002, Jordan was working with UMaine to
establish an accredited Athletic Training Education Program. To support
his efforts, the Wesley D. Jordan Fund was created in the University of
The first $500,000 will be earmarked for the renovation of the ground
floor of Lengyel Hall into a state-of-the-art athletic training teaching
facility — the Wes Jordan Athletic Training Education Complex — that may
be open as early as next year. An additional $250,000 will be raised for
The complex will be home to the Athletic Training Education Program,
which could be accredited by 2006, and the Maine Center for Coaching
Education, for which an operating endowment will be established.
"Wes created a nationally recognized program that brought great credit
to the university and the state, and he put quality people out there who
have done the same," says network sports announcer and alumnus Gary
Thorne. "The greatest tribute to him is it's carrying on."
UMaine Today Magazine
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