John Caleb Melvin
(1982 - 2003)
John Melvin University is dedicated to the loving memory of multi-sport collegiate athlete, John Caleb Melvin of Berwick, LA. John was a loving son and brother that could light up a room with his bright smile, positive energy, and charming personality.
John Melvin's Story
John Caleb Melvin (b. 1982 - d. 2003) was born April 14, 1982, in Morgan City, Louisiana, the third child of Jim and Susie Melvin. John has two sisters, Laura and Jean. He attended Immanuel Christian School from kindergarten through eighth-grade graduation. It was at Christ Gospel Church that he accepted Jesus Christ as his Saviour. This would have a definite and eternal influence on John, his outlook on life, and his eternal destination.
John entered Berwick High School as a new student his freshman year and soon became known as someone with a flashing smile and a quick wit. He was voted class favorite his junior and senior years. He became an excellent athlete, lettering in Track, Football and Baseball. He was voted Mr. Panther and Most Athletic his senior year. He still holds the record at BHS in the 100-meter, 200-meter, and 400-meter dash, and was a member of the record-holding 800-meter relay team. John also gained other honors such as first place in Regional Science Fair, Homecoming Court and Prom King.
During his teen years, John enjoyed traveling with his family. He visited Spain, Italy, France, Mexico, the Atlanta Olympic Games, and Washington, D.C. He also accompanied his church youth group on their annual trip to Indiana.
After a successful high school football career and having an outstanding track career under Coach Paul Gilder of Berwick High, John was recruited by several universities in Louisiana. Legendary track coach, the late Charles Lancon of the University of Louisiana - Lafayette, saw John run and offered him the opportunity to run track for the ULL Ragin' Cajuns and would allow him to play football as well. John signed with UL-Lafayette in May of 2000 and began pursuing a degree in Public Relations that Fall. He competed in athletics for two and a half years, lettering twice in track for Coach Lancon and later Coach Lance Veazey. He was part of the Sun Belt Conference's 2002 Conference Runners Up team. John was uniquely individual and was not influenced by everyone's expectations. He always lived life to the fullest.
That life tragically ended on February 17, 2003. After his death, the John Melvin Memorial Scholarship Fund was established and is administered by UL-Lafayette. An additional honor has been placed on John posthumously by Berwick High School Athletic Department and Coach Paul Gilder. Beginning in 2004, the annual BHS Panther Relays track meet was renamed the John Melvin Relays.