Memories of Tim

Steady. Quiet. Dependable. Friendly. Those are the words I would use to describe Tim Bruder in the 20 years that I have known him. 

The longtime Alhambra High cross country and track and field coach seemed to always be in a good mood when I saw him, and always was able to either answer my questions or point me in a direction where my questions could be answered, which is gold for a reporter. I knew that I could always count on Tim.


I saw Tim on Saturday at the state cross country championships. We exchanged a quick hello as I jogged past him to watch a race, and I remember he had that same friendly smile that I always associated with him.  

I could not imagine that would be the last time I would see Tim.  He  unexpectedly died in his sleep at his Walnut Creek home Saturday night, close friend Kevin Searls told the Bay Area News Group today.

“I think his cross country and track kids were an extension of his life, and he would give almost anything he could to those kids. He was a very giving person” Searls said. “He’s a very quiet person with a million ideas in his head.”

Tim was truly an ambassador for the sports of cross country and track and field. He was an North Coast Section cross country champiionship meet director, and was the clerk of the course for the NCS Meet of Champions in track and field.

Miramonte cross country coach Brian Henderson called Tim “a track and field and cross country icon.”

“He was one of those guys that you know whatever meet you went to, you would see Tim walking around or running the meet. There will be a lot of jobs that need to be filled to replace Tim Bruder,” Henderson said.

Miramonte track and field coach Chris Puppione said “This is not a random high school coach. This is an institution … He was one of the good guys. He always got the job done. He shows up every day, teaches, coaches, goes home. To him, this was the best life he could have.”


In researching my article on Tim, http://www.contracostatimes.com/high-school-sports/ci_13896504, I found that he touched people’s lives in many different ways. How did he touch yours? Feel free to share with us.

Phil Jensen

  • Liz

    Coach Bruder was supportive to all the runners and athletes he coached, whether you were the star of the team or came in last place. Somehow he was always stationed at that long lonely stretch at the back of the course, and you wondered how he made it there at the perfect time. In his quiet way, he was always helping his students reach their potential in every aspect of school life. He never made you feel like a loser, even when you lost. He’d just ask, “what happened?” and you knew that meant he knew you could do better. Steady, Quiet, Dependable, Friendly are perfect words to describe him. I will miss him.

  • Bart

    Rest in peace, old friend. East Bay Track and Field just lost a truly unsung hero.

  • steve brown

    Where online can we find the HAAL All League Cross Country Team? Thanks.

  • Knights

    Steve Brown, Beat it…ask for your HAAL XC team stats elsewhere, have you no compassion? This is a blog about a great man/coach/teacher who passed away and your asking for an all league team?

  • Ken Grace

    Tim was one of the “Best” I will miss him. We will all miss him.

  • Yvette

    Tim was a great coach and mentor when he coached me back in the 80’s at CVHS. I have many fond memories of Warriors games and long chats with him. May he rest in peace. My thoughts and prayers are with his loved ones during this time.

  • Rieboldt-Riehlman

    Bruder has been a friend since I was a teenager – His sisters have too. It will be hard for me in the upcoming T&F or XC Seasons…Probably for many, many Seasons to come. I loved volunteering at AHS just to have a chance to visit with Tim, to see the upcoming Athletes, and to absorb the energy that goes along with my love for running.
    When I was a kid, we had some crazy and carefree times. Bruder ran with a pack of the “True Friends” I have in my life. These are hard times for all I am sure.
    Later, when I grew up and married, my Son was blessed to have Tim as a mentor and a Coach at AHS. Bruder joked how I started to slip my son on the bus with the team in Elementary school and when he graduated his Senior year, John had traveled with him for over 7 years to the Castro Valley Invitational.
    Bruder was always so supportive of the Kids and helped guide them make the proper life choices.
    I blew a gasket when my son told me he was going out for Golf as his Spring Sport his Sophomore year but would still run Track for Bruder if it didn’t interfere. Bruder just asked if he was still going out for XC and said told me not to worry. Everything would be fine. He would be a great Golfer.
    My son is now off to College and on trips to Mt. Sac Invitational Bruder would stop by Cal Poly SLO for lunch. Many AHS students have enjoyed such visits over the years. I know my son has too.
    I have a sincere appreciation for what Tim Bruder has done for our community and the NCS. Hopefully, all will lift a hand to fill the void as needed.

  • Trina 1994

    You will be missed!

  • Dan Fraga

    Wow. Today is the first I heard of the news of Mr. Bruder’s passing.

    Mr. Bruder was never my coach. He was my auto shop teacher. On my first day in class he knew that cars weren’t my thing and made me a deal: I paint the Cross Country and Football banners, and in return, he’d pass me in auto shop. I painted and drew the banners for a lot of AHS sports evens, and Mr. Bruder gave me an A.

    It’s been 23 years since we’d made that deal. Now I make my living in advertisement and film, doing exactly what Mr. Bruder knew I was supposed to be doing. The man knew people. Mr. Bruder was never my coach, but I know why his kids won so often.

    Tim, I thank you.

  • Nicolas Lobsinger

    Now I dont have anyone to tell me what a peice of shit car I have in auto class 🙁