Ronald H. Colston Sr., 73, a retired coach and physical education teacher at Chestnut Hill Academy, died Oct. 17.

Mr. Colston had been a faculty member at the school for more than 25 years before retiring in 2011.

A lifelong Philadelphian, he received his bachelor’s degree from Cheyney State University and a master’s degree from Temple University. In college and as an alumnus, he was active with the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity.

Mr. Colston was a committed educator, mentoring hundreds of young people and never settling for mediocrity. “Pops”, as he was known by his former players at CHA, was remembered as an outstanding role model and mentor, pushing players hard on the field, but always willing to lend a sympathetic ear to anyone. Among the many jobs Mr. Colston held at CHA, one in particular was of great importance to him and the school. Each morning he would greet Lower School students at drop-off, looking each in the eye (and expecting the same in return) and shaking each boy’s hand in greeting.

The school’s alumni association recognized him for his commitment to the school by naming him an Honorary Alumnus in 1999.

Mr. Colston is survived by his wife of 18 years, Jean Denise Henderson; eight children from a previous marriage; 20 grandchildren; 21 great-grandchildren, and a host of other loving relatives. Memorial donations may be made to Precious Gems Supportive Services, P.O. Box 27431, Philadelphia, PA 19118.

  • Peter

    Mr. Colston was my gym teacher at Ethan Allen Elementary School. He was an amazing person and I love him dearly.