The city of Allen grieves the loss of Allen ISD’s new football coach, James Shillam, who died in the hospital on Sunday from COVID-19 and pneumonia. He was 56.

James Shillam, the new Freshman Football Coach for Allen ISD, passed away from COVID-19 and pneumonia. | Courtesy of Kyp Shillam.

James Shillam had just been hired on as a Freshman Football Coach at Allen High School. He died just days short of Allen ISD’s season opener this coming Friday.

Shillam’s wife, Kyp, said earlier this month he had been placed on a ventilator. This Sunday, she posted on Facebook that he had passed away.

“He is the most generous, kind, stable, righteous man I have known,” Kyp wrote of the Allen coach. “He is my rock and my everything. He is a Godly man and loving father who loves his players, students and the coaches he shares the sidelines with. He stepped foot in his promised land of Allen High School – the Eagles.”

“He adored every minute of Texas football,” Kyp said in an interview with WFAA, sitting in Allen Eagle Stadium where her husband would have coached his team in a few short days. “For him, Allen was his dream. It was his promised land.”

Jordan Jarrett

Jordan is the digital manager at Local Profile. She creates digital, print and social content. Her passion is profiling people and their experiences, connecting community through authentic narrative.