Assistant CIF Southern Section Commissioner Scott Raftery died Saturday morning at his Arcadia home following a three-year battle with cancer. He was 55.
As news of his death broke, mourners took to the Internet to pay tribute to the beloved coach and athlete.
Several former classmates recalled Raftery's stellar career as a baseball player at Arcadia High School, where he was named Player of the Year in 1975, his senior year. He eventually went on to play for Azusa Pacific University.
"One of the best Arcadia sports ever had," wrote Jill Shaw Kendrick on ArcadiaApaches.com, a Facebook page for AHS alums.
Still other mourners mentioned Raftery's generous personality and warm hugs.
"Thank you for always being so positive and offering a smile," Erin Poole wrote on his personal Facebook page.
Raftery worked for 16 years at Linfield Christian in Temecula, where he also served as athletic director and as a softball coach. His former students spoke of the impact he had on their lives.
"Rest in peace Raf!," Caroline Weinstein wrote. "You were such a wonderfully unique spirit. You touched the lives of all who had the privilege to know you or be taught by you. You and your class changed my life. I still have my blank book and I always will. You will be missed. My thoughts and love go out to the Raftery family."
There will be a Celebration of Life ceremony for Raftery at 11 a.m. on Saturday at Sunridge Community Church at 42299 Winchester Road in Temecula.