Roger William Albert
Class of 1961
Student #4161 – 2005 Athletic Hall of Fame
Roger was an outstanding wrestler and a marvelous football player as an offensive center and defensive end. He was on the first intramural wrestling team that Mr. David Halberg started in 1955. Roger was also a member of the ASD wrestling team that won the first championship at the Eastern States Schools for the Deaf wrestling tournament at Gallaudet University in 1956. He won first place 130 lbs. class twice in this tournament in 1956 and 1958. Roger was undefeated in 1958 and 1961. He qualified to participate in the Connecticut Interscholastic Wrestling tournament in 1960 and 1961 and was favored to win 1st place. He had tough luck with a severe ear cauliflower injury in 1960. In 1961 in the semi-final during overtime, the official awarded his opponent the victory based on his performance. However, the coaches felt that Roger should have won. In the third/fourth place contest, he won easily. Roger was co-captain during his senior year. He was a member of the USA Deaf Olympics Wrestling team in 1961. His wrestling style was steady with his fierce strength that wore down his opponents. He was one of the best wrestlers during his four years at ASD.
Jennie Rose Carnute
Class of 1954
Student #3768 – 2005 Athletic Hall of Fame
When Jennie was a student at the American School for the Deaf, she was known as an all-around athlete and cheerleader. She was co-captain of basketball (1952-1953), played softball from 1946-1952. Jennie played tennis from 1948 to 1950 and won the championship in 1949. She participated in archery and swimming. Jokingly, she did want to participate in school football but was not allowed to by the coach.
Albert William Darby
Class of 1955
Student #3858 – 2005 Athletic Hall of Fame
During his time, there was a lack of big players needed on a football team. There were only seventeen players. Al was a skinny, freckle-faced kid of 125 lbs. Coach Jack Wise had no choice but to place Al on the offensive and defensive line. Al struggled to play against heavier opponents, but he developed his skills to become a great lineman with super blocking techniques and good defensive capabilities. Running plays were frequently called for Al. Al was one of the reasons that helped Hall-of-Famer Ronald Wages’ brilliant rushing career, breaking several records in the process. The coaches and a defensive demon hailed Al a great leader. He was given Honorable Mention in Frat in 1951, 1952, and 1953. Al played basketball as a guard and a great playmaker who helped Hall-of-Famer Frank Rarus break ASD’s point records. Al was also a good defenseman.
Arthur J. Dlugskecki
Class of 1942 (Left to work)
Student #3746 – 2005 Athletic Hall of Fame
Arthur is remembered as a great basketball player at ASD during the years 1940-1942. He received the varsity letter for basketball three straight years and was tri-captain in his final year at ASD in 1942. Arthur was a sharpshooter from long range and a clever playmaker. He was frequently the leading scorer on the team during regular-season games and the annual Eastern Basketball Tournament for the Deaf schools, including several competitive schools from the Northeast corridor. World War II cut his playing career at ASD when he left his junior year. Arthur was a champion on the golf links, having won the annual Connecticut State Deaf Golfers Association title eight times from 1959-1970.
Leroy Arthur Fitts
Class of 1951
Student #3656 – 2005 Athletic Hall of Fame
Due to his height, 6’5″, playing basketball came naturally for him. At that time, being 6’5″ was unheard of during the late 1940s/ Captain of his basketball team during his senior year, he made 35 points in one game and the total points made during 1950-1951 season was 431 points. The records are made to be broken. He witnessed his 35 points in one game and total points in a season broken a few years later. Leroy congratulated the players who broke his record. Leroy played football as an offensive and defensive end. The quarterback at that time had an easy time passing the ball to Leroy due to his height. As tall as he was, Leroy did well in football.
George Maurice Krajewski
Class of 1948 (left to work)
Student #3651 – 2005 Athletic Hall of Fame
George was a great athletic player as a fullback in football games. He almost always made 3rd conversions, even a couple of touchdowns in less than 15 yards to goal/ Opponent teams had a hard time stopping the “Gallop Horse” through the line. George only had one fumble in the many games he played. Even sometimes, he had put online for defense whenever necessary. He showed sportsmanship and always was a gentleman in every football game.
He always played well for us.
Dolores Josephine Spaccaluti
Class of 1959
Student #3895 – 2005 Athletic Hall of Fame
Dolores was an all-around athlete during 1955-1959. She was an outstanding player in intramural sports such as tennis, basketball, and volleyball. Her team won many games at the Annual Girls’ Sports Night.
Dolores was considered good enough to be on the boys’ basketball team. Her former coach, Mrs. Twomey, believed Mary Louis Jones and Dolores, her most outstanding basketball players.
Dolores was also a cheerleader. She always participated in every sport she could and always gave 100 percent effort. Even though she was usually elected team captain, Dolores played as a team player and supported her teammates. She deserved recognition as an athlete Hall of Fame inductee.
Robert J. Taylor – Honorary
ASD Staff – 2005 Athletic Hall of Fame
Robert J. Taylor, the former assistant superintendent, and maintenance department head, was born in County Armagh, Ireland, and moved to West Hartford in 1930. He worked with the American School for the Deaf for many years, retiring in 1971 but continuing part-time work until his death. The American School for the Deaf has been his life. Never a person to neglect a task and a non-adherent of the conventional eight-hour day, Bob was always what our modern generation emphasizes, “involved.” Beginning his career as the school bus driver, moving up to Superintendent of Buildings and Grounds, in recent years, he was assistant to the Headmaster for Business Administration, mainly in charge of purchasing. But Bob’s most special forte is still the flexible “green thumb. “Bob’s involvement extended into many spheres. He has always been an ardent supporter of the school’s athletic programs, and his interest and warm friendship with the Alumni are known far and wide. Always ever present to assist anyone in emergencies of any kind, be it staff member, former employees, students, deaf or hearing high or low.
Donald Wallace Wade
Class of 1961
Student #3966 – 2005 Athletic Hall of Fame
Don was a coach’s dream as a football and basketball player. He did everything in football, and basketball asked of him. Don had an intense desire to win despite the game being out of reach, and he put in 100 percent effort during a practice session. He was a starter in football and basketball for four years. He was one of the leading scorers with 20-point average during his junior and senior years and broke total rushing yards with 2,138 yards during his four years. The most remarkable run he ever made was on the opening play with an 80-yard touchdown during the 1960 homecoming. The PSD got four tacklers on him, but they could not stop him. During one run, they had to tackle him from the bench to do it. Don was selected on All-American football and basketball teams in both the Frat and Silent Worker. He was a team player even when he was injured. He was one of the best football and basketball players based on his four-year performance during his time.
Robert Sparrow Wade
Class of 1962
Student #3967 – 2005 Athletic Hall of Fame
Bob was a lanky athlete who excelled in all three sports at ASD. Even opponent teams had a lot of respect for Robert’s athletic skills. When the Fitchburg High School (Mass.) football team learned Bob was killed in an automobile accident, they asked for a few moments of silence for Bob. The Fitchburg team never forgot Bob’s excellent play against them the previous fall. Bob was a fullback and a powerful runner. His long legs were hard to tackle, and his long arms showed them, would-be tacklers. He was a terror as a defensive middle linebacker. Basketball was his other outstanding performance on the court. He was great in rebounding, defense, and shooting as well as a good playmaker. It was no surprise he was an All-American deaf football and basketball player among the deaf athletes around the country. Had he lived longer, he would have done well on the deaf club sports teams. Bob was a fun-loving young man who enjoyed playing and life in general.
John Jack Wise – Honorary
Coach – 2005 Athletic Hall of Fame
Jack was ASD’s third coach for football, basketball, and baseball and a physical education instructor. If one only viewed his coaching records, one may not be impressed. However, if we look deeply into his endeavors, his original feats had merits worthy of our consideration.
Wise started the Physical Education Program at ASD. He encouraged and pushed a few non-athletic boys to join sports, and a few of those boys have already been inducted into the ASDAA Hall of Fame.
Not only was he a coach, but also a teacher he was! He established a baseball team. He showed us many other points of interest, too. He established midget and pony football teams.
During away football games, especially to New York School for the Deaf or New Jersey School for the Deaf, he educated us by showing us the locations of West Point Academy, the Bear Mountains, and Polo Grounds, the Homes of New York Giants. He then would talk to us about their significance and history.
Because of the first three items above, the ASD sports programs became a powerhouse around the eastern states from 1956-1975. What he established; other coaches carried on.
The committees are proud to endorse Jack Wise as the new inductee of the ASDAA Hall of Fame.
2005 ATHLETIC HALL OF FAME COMMITTEES
Chairperson: Peter McGee, ‘62
David Lawrence, ‘65
Edward Frith, ‘54
Helen Dardis, ‘50
Bruce McNeish, ‘63
Robert Backofen, ‘69
Landon Sahlin, ‘62
Hugh Farquhar, ‘60
Sandra (Rose) Larson, ‘79
Donald Wetzel, ‘46