Stem, four others open Hall's doors

January 28, 1994|By Bill Free | Bill Free,Staff Writer

It was an evening for honoring outstanding athletes for accomplishments off the field as well as on it.

Athletes who have given something back to the community and are people youngsters should emulate as role models, said Arnold "Skip" Amass, whose idea it was to create the Carroll County Sports Hall of Fame.

Amass was in the crowd last night as five men became the first inductees during ceremonies at Carroll Community College.

George Stem, a former Westminster High football great and University of Maryland two-way standout, was typical of the kind of person Amass and the Westminster Rotary Club set out to recognize.

Stem, 49, who has gone on to success with the U.S. Department of Agriculture in Morgantown, W.Va., said he was never an athlete with a lot of speed and size.

"I played with a lot of heart and emotion. I was only 5-11 and 180," Stem said of his Maryland days.

"I took a one-year scholarship opportunity given to me and earned a scholarship the last three years. I was almost intimidated by the size of the players at Maryland, but I soon discovered that they fell down just like the players at Westminster when I hit them."

The other charter members of the Carroll Hall were Earl Hersh, who played first base for the Milwaukee Braves in September 1956; the late Herb Ruby Jr., who coached Westminster High to its only state basketball championship in 1947; Charlie Havens, captain of the unbeaten Western Maryland football team in 1929; and basketball standout Charles Duppins, a trailblazer for the African-American community who entered Francis Scott Key in 1959 when it opened as the first integrated school in Carroll County.

Duppins, known as a top rebounder and shot-blocker, toured FTC with the barnstorming New York Harlem Astronauts. He was the only one of the five inductees who didn't play football.

Hersh played football, soccer, basketball, baseball and track and field in high school and signed a pro contract with the Boston Braves in 1953. He later coached football at Westminster High and become director of athletics for the county.

Ruby, in addition to his basketball coaching accomplishments, helped establish football programs at South Carroll, North Carroll and Francis Scott Key from 1964 to 1969, when he was supervisor of physical education in Carroll County.

Ruby also coached the Westminster High football, baseball and track teams.

Havens went on to be a football coach, athletic director and associate professor at Western Maryland.

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