WINSLOW, Maine (NEWS CENTER)-- In football, you fight for every inch. Jim Poulin knows what it means to fight on and off the field. The Winslow black raiders football coach was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in 1995.
"If you end up with a challenge in your life," Poulin said. "You can stay on the ground and lay there and mope and complain about it, or you can get yourself back up, dust yourself off the best you can and let's continue on what's happening."
And his hardest challenge to date came just a few months ago.
"Last June, this past June, they got together most of the football team, and I told them I wasn't coming back. And it was probably the toughest thing I had to do," Poulin said.
This year marks the first time in decades he will not be head of the raiders defense.
His disease had progressed too far. This year marks the first time in 39 years he will not be head of the raiders defense.
But though his is not on the field, Poulin still spends every home game as close to the sidelines he can get. And his players could not be happier to see him.
And head coach Mike Siviski knows he won't be forgotten anytime soon.
"He's meant so much for the kids in Winslow as a motivator and Jimmy has great determination," Siviski said. "His presence is still felt."
Coach Poulin helped build the black raiders into the championship team they are today. They head to Nokomis Friday as one of the only undefeated teams left in Class C East.
Though he has passed the torch onto a new group of team leaders, Coach Poulin will always be available to give students his words of wisdom. Because as he says, "Once a coach, always a coach."
*Correction: When this article was originally published, it was stated that Winslow was the only undefeated team left in Class C East. As of when this article was published, Foxcroft and Waterville are also undefeated.