OldArchive / Sports

The End Zone Seat: Is It Time to Honor Our Greats?

I came across an item in another newspaper earlier this week about an effort to create a Football Hall of Fame at Canton High School.

Since I covered many of Canton’s gridiron greats during the school’s glory days in the 1980s and 90s, I think it’s a great idea.

But that item also raised a notion I’ve had for some time now.

It certainly is long past time for Wyalusing Valley High School to create an All-Sports Hall of Fame.

There have been many great athletes who have donned the Green and Gold and several legendary coaches who have guided them through the years—all of whom are worthy of honoring and keeping their legacies alive for future generations of Wyalusing Valley athletes.

It has been well over half a century since the Wyalusing, New Albany, Laceyville and Camptown schools combined forces “in the Susquehanna Valley.”

In that time, we’ve already lost far too many of our athletic greats, including Shorty Hitchcock, who went well before his time, and Bob Hanzok, who left us just this past year.

Fortunately, there is a great starting point for just such an All-Sports Hall of Fame.

The Wyalusing Wrestling Hall of Fame has been in existence since 1999 and its ranks certainly include many of our great athletes and coaches from Hitchcock and Karl Schnure to Matt Fisk.

But there are many great athletes and coaches, male and female, who weren’t wrestlers.

Hanzok, for example, starred in track as our first state champion besides being an outstanding football and basketball player.

How do we honor Ethan Kilmer, who made it to the NFL, or Grover Powell, our first Major Leaguer?

What about Cathy Boyanowski, who won a state track championship and was our first 1,000-point scorer in basketball—of either gender?

Then there are the coaches—Ray Raffin and Dave Behrend in football; Gene Salsman in baseball and Charlotte Anderson in softball. How do we honor them for the myriad championships they brought to Wyalusing and the many lives they influenced?

Not only should the aforementioned be honored, there are many others worthy of recognition.

It’s certainly a discussion worth having. 

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