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Pat Summitt remembered four years later

She was a pioneer for the game of basketball, an advocate for women's athletics and a legend whose mark has been left in Knoxville and far beyond.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Four years ago, the incomparable Pat Summitt died at the age of 64.

Summitt is one of the greatest coaches in basketball history and one of the most important as well.

8 national championships. 7-time NCAA Coach of the Year. 1,098 career wins. 0 losing seasons.

She was a pioneer for the game of basketball, an advocate for women's athletics and a legend whose mark has been left in Knoxville and far beyond.

June 2016: Legendary Tennessee Lady Vols coach Pat Summitt dies at age 64

Summitt coached 21 All-American players, 39 All-SEC players and 12 Olympians (as part of the 1976 Summer Olympics. A total of 14 players Summitt coached while at UT played in the Olympic games at some point).

In 2012, President Barack Obama awarded Summitt the Presidential Medal of Freedom, which is the highest civilian honor in the nation. She also received the Arthur Ashe Courage Award at the 2012 ESPY Awards.

Pat's legacy and her mission to fight to find a cure for Alzheimer's Disease and dementia remain through the Pat Summitt Foundation. 

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The Pat Summitt Foundation was established in Nov. 2011 by Pat and her son Tyler, and works toward finding a cure and to provide support for patients and caregivers.

Ways to support the Pat Summitt Foundation

In January 2017, UT Medical opened the doors to the Pat Summitt Alzheimer's Clinic, which has served to help many suffering from the disease and improve access to healthcare services.

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Summitt was born on June 14, 1952, in Clarksville, Tenn., the fourth of five children. She attended Cheatham County High School in Ashland City, Tenn., because Clarksville did not have a girl's team.

Back then, Summitt was known as Trish Head (her full name is Patricia Sue Head Summitt. Pat Head married R.B. Summitt in 1980. Pat Summitt filed for divorce in 2007, and the divorce was finalized in 2008).

Trish was a four-year starter at Cheatham County High School from 1967-1970, and a TSSAA All-District 20 Tournament selection in 1970, the same year she graduated.

In 1970, there were no athletic scholarships for women with the passage of Title IX still two years away.

Each of Summitt’s brothers received athletic scholarships, but her parents had to pay her way to college.

Summitt led UT-Martin to a 64-29 record from 1970-1974, including two trips to the national championship tournament in 1972 and 1973.

Four games into her senior season, Summitt tore her anterior cruciate ligament, a near career-ending knee injury.

UT credits Helen B. Watson, the former chairperson of the university's physical education department, for bringing Pat Summitt (then Pat Head) to Knoxville. Watson asked Summitt to coach the Tennessee women’s team in a letter dated April 30, 1974.

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