Norm Parker Celebration of Life Service is Saturday

May 27, 2014

IOWA CITY, Iowa — A Celebration of Life service for former University of Iowa defensive coordinator Norm Parker will be held Saturday, May 31 at Kinnick Stadium. The service is open to the public from 1-3 p.m. in the south end zone of Kinnick Stadium.

Attendees should enter the stadium through Gate B (southwest corner). Gate B will open at 12:30 p.m. Parking is available in all University parking lots adjacent to Kinnick Stadium. Normal daily parking rates apply in parking ramps adjacent to UI Hospitals and Clinics. In the event of inclement weather, the service will be held in the Paul W. Brechler Press Box at Kinnick Stadium.

Parker passed away on January 13, 2014. He joined the Iowa program prior to the 1999 season, serving as defensive coordinator for 13 seasons. He served in the coaching profession for 48 years.

Following the 2011 season, Parker was named Assistant Coach of the Year by the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA). He was a finalist for the Frank Broyles Assistant Coach of the Year Award in 2004 and 2005.

Under Parker’s direction, Iowa ranked among the top 10 nationally in rushing defense five times. Iowa ranked in the top 10 in scoring defense three times from 2008-11. Iowa won 85 games from 2002-11, including 50 Big Ten games. The Hawkeyes earned a share of the Big Ten title in both 2002 and 2004 and tied for second in 2009.

The Hawkeyes were bowl eligible 11 straight seasons (2001-11) and ranked in the final top 10 of both major polls four times with Parker directing the Iowa defense. The Hawkeyes won bowl games following the 2008, 2009 and 2010 seasons, defeating South Carolina, Georgia Tech and Missouri, respectively. Overall, Iowa won six of 10 bowl games from 2001-11, including four January bowl games.

Parker began coaching on the collegiate level at Eastern Michigan in 1968 after beginning his coaching career in the high school ranks for three seasons. He also coached at Wake Forest, Minnesota, Illinois, East Carolina, Michigan State and Vanderbilt. Parker was a native of Hazel Park, Michigan, and earned two degrees from Eastern Michigan University.

Parker is survived by his wife, Linda, son Jim (Denise) of Bloomfield, Michigan; daughter Suzy Parker of Nashville, Tennessee; daughter Michelle Hoey of Pickford, Michigan; daughter Joyce (Rob) Anderson of Drummond Island, Michigan; brother Bill Parker of Hamburg Twp., Michigan, and six grandchildren (Tyler, Alyssa, Colton, Roxie, Bridgette and Jasmine). Norm was preceded in death by his very special and dear son, Jeff Parker, his first wife, Ginger Hunter, and his brother Richard Parker.