5 athletes honored for contributions to sports

January 28, 1994|By John Harris III | John Harris III,Contributing Writer

More than 200 people braved icy conditions to be a part of the first Carroll County Sports Hall of Fame banquet last night in the atrium at Carroll Community College.

The event, sponsored by the Westminster Rotary Club, honored five athletes who brought honor to county sports: Charles Duppins, Charles Havens, Earl Hersh, Herbert E. Ruby and George L. Stem. Mr. Ruby was honored posthumously; the other four were at the ceremony.

The five are the first members of the new Hall of Fame at the college.

"It's your night tonight; you've shown by your being here on a night like tonight that obstacles can be overcome," said Baltimore Spirit soccer coach Kenny Cooper, one of four Baltimore sports figures on hand.

Other guest athletes were former Spirit player-turned assistant coach Mike Stankovic and ex-Baltimore Colt Mike Curtis and Bruce Laird.

"An awful lot of people showed up, considering the weather," said Dwight Dingle, Rotary Club president-elect. "I'm just pleased that we had all of these people come out on a night like tonight."

Mr. Ruby, a native of Illinois, coached four sports and served as athletic director at Westminster High School from 1947 through 1963. He was the founder of the school's football program and coached the 1947 basketball team to the school's only state title. He also served as the county's supervisor of physical education and athletics from 1964 to 1969. He died in 1990.

Mr. Havens, a Westminster resident and the oldest inductee, was a four-year varsity football standout at Western Maryland College, where he earned Honorable Mention All-American status.

He captained the school's undefeated 1929 squad and went on to coach baseball, wrestling and boxing as well as football at the college.

Mr. Stem was a three-year letter man at the University of Maryland and was captain of the football team in 1965. He organized the county's first semiprofessional football team, the Carroll County Chargers.

Mr. Duppins, a truck driver who lives in Gettysburg, Pa., was a member of the first racially integrated class at Francis Scott Key High School. He led the Eagles basketball squad to two consecutive state semifinal appearances. He led his teams in rebounds and blocked shots, high-jumped six feet (a county record that stood for 30 years) and pitched for the school's baseball team. He later played for the semipro New York Harlem Astronauts.

Mr. Hersh was a standout football player at West Chester State College in addition to playing professional baseball. A small-college All-American, Mr. Hersh turned down a chance to play in the National Football League (he was drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles) and embarked on a seven-year professional baseball career.

He followed Mr. Ruby as supervisor of physical education and athletics and retired in 1992.

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