Services announced for Austintown football coach Annarella - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Services announced for Austintown football coach Annarella

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AUSTINTOWN, Ohio -

Final arrangements have been announced for Austintown Fitch football coach Phil Annarella.

On Friday, June 14, calling hours will be at the Fitch High School auditorium from 2 pm to 8 pm.

On Saturday, June 15, there will be a funeral service at St. Stephen Church in Niles at 10 am. 

The Trumbull County Coroner determined that Annarella, 70, died as a result of heart disease at his home in Niles.

Annarella coached in the Valley for over 40 years, making stops at East Liverpool, Rayen, Warren Western Reserve, Warren Harding, Hickory, and Niles McKinley before taking over as Austintown Fitch head coach in 2007.

Throughout those years, he inspired hundreds of young men to play their best and be better people off the field as well.

"Taught me a lot of things that I implement now as a head coach," said Warren G. Harding football coach Steve Arnold. "He was old school. That's what allowed him to last and have success over the number of years that he coached. He stayed true to his principles."

Coach Annarella won nearly 250 games during his career.

Annarella was the current head coach at Austintown Fitch and made numerous playoff appearances.

Grief counselors are being brought in to help football players through the grieving process according to a coach on the Fitch staff.

A personal friend and former high school coach, Bill Bohren, said Annarella was "what a coach should be."

Bohren said, "His teams were disciplined and tough but always showed great character. He was a warm friend."

"He was a vicious competitor, but after the game was over, he's your best friend," said Bohren. "All the young kids in the program who have been under Phil have certainly benefited. If I had a son playing football, I'd want him to play for Phil Annarella."

Austintown School Board President Don Sherwood said, "A great leader of young men. He put together a great staff and left the program better than when he was hired."

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