FLOSSMOOR | The athletic director for Homewood-Flossmoor High School died Wednesday night at the school, officials said.
Alec Anderson, 54, of Kankakee, was found next to a treadmill at the school at 999 Kedzie Ave. in Flossmoor, a spokeswoman for the Cook County Medical Examiner's office said.
He was pronounced dead at 8:06 p.m. at Advocate South Suburban Hospital in Hazel Crest, the spokeswoman said.
The cause of death was determined to be coronary artery disease following a Thursday morning autopsy, a spokesman for the medical examiner's office said.
Anderson became the athletic director at the school in July 2012.
"During his time with us at H-F, Alec made a tremendously positive impact on our staff and students through his spirit and commitment to our school," Superintendent Dr. Von Mansfield said in a statement issued Thursday morning.
"He was a dedicated administrator who always had students' best interests in mind. He will be missed as a colleague and friend. Our most sincere condolences and prayers go out to his family and friends."
He previously worked as assistant principal of athletics and activities at Bolingbrook High School from 2005 to 2012 and in administrative positions at Evanston Township High School and Urbana High School, according to the Homewood-Flossmoor High School Web site.
First-year H-F girls basketball coach Tony Smith was hired by Anderson, where he worked under him at Bolingbrook. Smith was emotional when talking about Anderson.
"He was a mentor for me and was just a great athletic director, educator and person," Smith said. "I learned a lot from him."
Smith said he was with Anderson Wednesday evening.
"This is surreal," Smith said. "It hit me, the other coaches, staff and students hard.
"(Anderson) was always right to the point and you knew where you stood with him. He always wanted to make sure the kids were treated fairly."
Marian Catholic athletic director Dave Mattio offered his remembrances of Anderson Thursday.
“Alec represented the good in high school administration and athletics," Mattio said. "His ability to be direct and truthful was a quality to be admired. He always represented what is good about high school athletics, and always did so in the most professional manner. His passing is a terrible loss to high school athletics in the south suburbs.”