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Del Mar College mourns passing of regent, who was also the first Islander baseball coach, Hector Salinas

Salinas passed away overnight from kidney failure. He was 76.
Credit: Del Mar College

Del Mar College (DMC) is mourning the death of Hector Salinas, who held an at-large seat on the College’s Board of Regents. 

Salinas was elected to the Board in 2018 for a first term that would have run through 2024, college officials said. Del Mar Board of Regents chairwoman Carol Scott released the following statement on the passing of Salinas:

“The loss of Regent Hector Salinas is truly heartbreaking for the Del Mar family,” said Carol Scott, chairwoman of the DMC Board of Regents. “I served with Coach Salinas, as he was affectionately called, on the Corpus Christi Independent School District board where he was a strong advocate for K-12 education.  I then had the privilege of serving with him on the Del Mar College board. Through it all, Coach Salinas remained sharply focused on student needs and ensuring that all those seeking an education were afforded the opportunity to learn. He will be greatly missed by the Del Mar family and by our greater community in which he gave so much.  We send our heartfelt condolences to the Salinas family and all those who are mourning this great loss.” 

Salinas graduated from Mary Carroll High School, where he played both baseball and basketball and led the Carroll Tigers to their first district baseball championship and state tournament. 

He attended Pan American College in Edinburg and earned his bachelor’s degree. Salinas then obtained a master’s degree in education from the University of Texas-Pan American. 

For one year (1968-1969), Salinas played Triple-A baseball for Veracruz and Mexico City in the Mexican League. 

His career included teaching and coaching at CCISD’s Tom Browne Middle School and Roy Miller and Foy H. Moody high schools. 

Salinas led the Moody Trojans to six University Interscholastic League playoffs over a seven-year period and their first state tournament in 1978. 

Salinas served as head baseball coach at Texas Southmost College in Brownsville and Laredo College before the Texas A&M University-Kingsville (TAMUK) Javelina baseball program selected him to build their sports team. 

Beginning in 1993, he served as head coach with TAMUK’s intercollegiate program for six years. In 1995 and 1998, Salinas’ teams won the Lone Star Conference championship. In 1998, the ball club also was selected for the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division II national playoffs, making them the first Javelina club recognized at that level.Salinas coached at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (TAMU-CC) for seven years after leaving the Javelinas in 1998. 

He became the first “Islander” baseball coach and led a successful career with the Islanders, earning him the NCAA Independent Coach of the Year award during his tenure.

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