US

Hastert indictment sends tiny Illinois hometown sifting back through memories of 'coach Denny'

  • In this April 20, 2005 file photo, House Speaker Dennis Hastert, center, attends the dedication ceremony for the new Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum in Springfield, Ill.  Also on the stage are, from left, former Illinois Gov. Jim Edgar, Julie Cellini, U.S. Sens. Barack Obama and Dick Durbin, former Illinois Congressman Ray Lahood, museum director Richard Norton Smith, First Lady Laura Bush and President George W. Bush. A newly unveiled indictment against Hastert released Thursday, May 28, 2015, accuses the Republican of agreeing to pay $3.5 million in hush money to keep a person from the town where he was a longtime schoolteacher silent about "prior misconduct." (File/The State Journal-Register via AP)

    In this April 20, 2005 file photo, House Speaker Dennis Hastert, center, attends the dedication ceremony for the new Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum in Springfield, Ill. Also on the stage are, from left, former Illinois Gov. Jim Edgar, Julie Cellini, U.S. Sens. Barack Obama and Dick Durbin, former Illinois Congressman Ray Lahood, museum director Richard Norton Smith, First Lady Laura Bush and President George W. Bush. A newly unveiled indictment against Hastert released Thursday, May 28, 2015, accuses the Republican of agreeing to pay $3.5 million in hush money to keep a person from the town where he was a longtime schoolteacher silent about "prior misconduct." (File/The State Journal-Register via AP)  (The Associated Press)

  • In this April 20, 2005 file photo, House Speaker Dennis Hastert, center, tours the new Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum in Springfield, Ill. with President George W. Bush and First Lady Laura Bush and museum director Richard Norton Smith, right. At left is Hastert's wife, Jean. A newly unveiled indictment against Hastert released Thursday, May 28, 2015, accuses the Republican of agreeing to pay $3.5 million in hush money to keep a person from the town where he was a longtime schoolteacher silent about "prior misconduct." (File/The State Journal-Register via AP)

    In this April 20, 2005 file photo, House Speaker Dennis Hastert, center, tours the new Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum in Springfield, Ill. with President George W. Bush and First Lady Laura Bush and museum director Richard Norton Smith, right. At left is Hastert's wife, Jean. A newly unveiled indictment against Hastert released Thursday, May 28, 2015, accuses the Republican of agreeing to pay $3.5 million in hush money to keep a person from the town where he was a longtime schoolteacher silent about "prior misconduct." (File/The State Journal-Register via AP)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this July 31, 2000 file photo, House Speaker Dennis Hastert of Ill. gives a thumbs up after taking over as chairman of the Republican National Convention in Philadelphia. Hastert’s career as House speaker both arose and ended amid the sex-related scandals of others. Now, eight years after leaving Congress, Hastert’s own legacy is threatened by an indictment charging financial misdeeds _ and cryptically referring to “misconduct” against an unnamed person.  (AP Photo/Amy Sancetta, File)

    FILE - In this July 31, 2000 file photo, House Speaker Dennis Hastert of Ill. gives a thumbs up after taking over as chairman of the Republican National Convention in Philadelphia. Hastert’s career as House speaker both arose and ended amid the sex-related scandals of others. Now, eight years after leaving Congress, Hastert’s own legacy is threatened by an indictment charging financial misdeeds _ and cryptically referring to “misconduct” against an unnamed person. (AP Photo/Amy Sancetta, File)  (The Associated Press)

Before Dennis Hastert was U.S. House speaker and second in line to the president, he was known around Yorkville, Illinois, as Denny the coach.

Hastert was a beloved mentor to athletes on the high school wrestling team and in Scouting groups.

This week's indictment accuses Hastert of manipulating bank accounts and lying to the FBI to allegedly cover up past "misconduct." It has left hometown admirers searching back through fond memories and struggling to understand how a case of alleged sexual abuse and extortion could have emerged from that period.

Hastert's assistant wrestling coach, Bob Evans, joined him in taking Scouts camping and fishing in northern Minnesota.

He said there was never a hint of wrongdoing and that he was angry someone was accusing Hastert without even coming forward publicly.