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Don R. Sebolt, 62

By Sandy Broughton

Spectrum Volume 20 Issue 25 - March 26, 1998

Don R. Sebolt, a faculty member in the Department of Human Nutrition, Foods, and Exercise in the College of Human Resources and Education, died Saturday, March 21, at Roanoke Memorial Hospital as a result of injuries sustained in an automobile accident four weeks ago. He was 62. A memorial service was held Tuesday at the War Memorial Chapel.
Sebolt began his career in education as a high-school physical-education teacher and coach in Harrodsburg, Kentucky. He earned his master's degree from the University of Kentucky and a doctorate from Indiana University.
He joined the Virginia Tech faculty in 1964 and helped shape Virginia Tech's curriculum and research in health and physical education and exercise science. His roles at Virginia Tech included varsity tennis coach, coordinator of the Muscular Function Research Laboratory, and coordinator of fitness-and-wellness instructional-services programs at the university.
With colleagues Janet Walberg Rankin and William Herbert, Sebolt established Virginia Tech's Exercise Physiology Laboratory. His research, published in the International Journal of Sports Medicine, focused on evaluation and measurement of the effects of physical activity, and the relation of diet to muscle function.
He presented research at the annual convention of the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation. Sebolt taught a graduate course in research and design in exercise science, which guided students in statistical analysis and development of research proposals. He also taught courses in skeletal-muscular function in exercise and an undergraduate course in tests and measurements.
Sebolt was active in professional and academic associations, including the American College of Sports Medicine, the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance, and the National Strength and Conditioning Association. Through the Virginia Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance, Sebolt worked with public schools to establish achievement in fitness as a part of education in Virginia.
He was honored by the association for chairing the group's state research section and conducting a critical analysis of Virginia's physical fitness test. The Central Virginia Criminal Justice Academy also honored him for his work on physical-fitness assessment for law-enforcement personnel.