Irish Legends Hall of Fame Gala

irish_legendsThe Irish Legends Hall of Fame Gala is an annual celebration of our outstanding alumni and supporters.  Since 1924, St. Joseph Central Catholic High School has been graduating some of our community’s business leaders and financial supporters. The Irish Legends Award serves to honor those that give back to our school with their time and talents.

Stay tuned for details on our next event. . .

Here are some photos from our past galas!

(Click on a photo to see larger)

 

 

2017 Honorees


Mr. William T. Carroll, Jr.
(March 27, 1942 – February 2, 2015)
Class of 1960

Bill was born in Huntington on March 27, 1942, the son of Mary Margaret Burke Carroll and William T. Carroll, Sr.  His family consisted of four sisters, Mary Pat Spensky (Bill), Jeanie Schmid (Ron), Maureen Carbone (Rocco, deceased), and Mary Margaret Carroll-Curis (Jim), and a brother, Mike Carroll (Mary Ellen).  All of his siblings graduated from St. Joseph Central Catholic High School.

While at St. Joe, Bill excelled in sports, especially basektball where he played varsity under Coach Jim Lamb.  He also excelled in tennis.  He graduated from St. Joe in 1960 with basketball and tennis scholarships.  He accepted a tennis scholarship to Marshall University in lieu of the basektball scholarship to Wheeling College.  While at MU he played #1 Varsity and assisted Coach Lamb at St. Joe with the JV team.  He was also a member of Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity.  Bill graduated from MU in 1965 with a BA in education.

Bill continued his love for sports and teaching and accepted a position of head basketball coach at Ashland Holy Family High School in Ashland, KY.  While at Holy Family he was voted North Eastern Kentucky Conference “Coach of the Year.”  Bill also continued his career in tennis as the MU Men’s Tennis Coach for 11 years.  In the summers, he played numerous tournaments, winning many championships in singles and doubles.  He received #1 ranking in Men’s Singles in the USTA Western Division.  He was also the tennis pro at Guyan Golf and Country Club for 6 years.  Later he became the tennis director for the Greater Huntington Parks Tennis Courts.  He received the Rena Spencer Tennis Award for his contributions to the tennis community.

In 1975, Bill returned to St. Joe as head basketball coach, assistant principal and athletic director.  In 1976 he co-coached the Huntington AAU basketball team to a National victory in Las Vegas.  While at St. Joe he was instrumental in continuing the SJI, sharing the spirit, sportsmanship and competition with the basetball community.  The SJI was dedicated to him in 1992.

Bill retired from St. Joe in 1990 to pursue a career as an insurance agent with Principal Financial Group.  He also took up golf in lieu of tennis.

Bill was married to Pamela Vance, St. Joe Class of 1965, for 47 years and they have 2 sons, William T. Carroll, III, Class of 1988 and Mark Vance Carroll.

 


Mr. Robert J. Moss, III
Class of 1973

Robert J. Moss, III, Bobby, was born in Huntington, WV on October 25, 1955 to Robert J. (Buck), Jr. and Jeanette Salem Moss.  His siblings, Susan, Edward, Michael and Laura, all graduated from St. Joseph Central Catholic High School.

Bobby graduated from St. Joe in 1973.  He played basketball in the 10th grade and was the team’s manager in 9th, 11th and 12th grades.  He was also a member of the Science Club of America, CYO, Key Club, TEC, Future Scientists of America, Yearbook Staff, Sports Editor for the school’s newspaper and was Vice-President of Student Council in the 11th grade.

Bobby owned and operated Moss Highlawn TV Center for 20 years and Moss Pre-Owned Automobiles.  The SJI committee named Bobby to the tournament’s Hall of Fame in 1995 where he contributed his services for over 40 years.

Bobby has three wonderful children:  Lisa Johnson (Evan); Amy Hafertepen (Mark); and Robert J. Moss, IV (1989-2006).  In addition, he has four grandchildren that are the light of his life:  Cade and Cami Johnson ad Paxton and Paisley Hafertepen.

 


Mr. Thaddeus A. Blatt

Thaddeus A. Blatt (Thad) was born on November 29, 1938 to Gladstone J. and Pauline V. Blatt.  He has three brothers, Phillip, Stephen and Jerome along with two sisters, Paula and Jane, all of whom graduated from St. Joe.  Thad volunteered his time for over 30 years for the SJI and was a top seller for the school’s annual Reverse Raffle for many years.

He purchased LJ Navy Trucking Company in 1974 and ran a successful trucking business for 40 years until selling it in 2014.  He and his wife, Carroll, have been married for 57 years and have a wonderful family consisting of 4 sons – Jon, Joseph, Eric and Andy and 3 daughters – Michele, Teresa and Becky.  They also have 19 grandchildren and 7 great-grandchildred which they adore.

 


Mr. James F. Lamb
(August 20, 1930 – February 21, 2003)

Jim was born in the shore town of Westerly Rhode Island, the second of eight Lamb children.  Growing up, his two passions were playing basketball and summers on the Westerly beaches. Basketball was a thread that ran through most of his life and decidedly influenced the path that unfolded throughout his early years.  Attending Westerly High School, Jim played point guard for his team, a team with great talent that took them to several New England championships.  This team’s success and their comradery, coupled with the influence of incredible coaching by James Federico – made college and the desire to play ball a must for Jim.

With an open invitation from his aunt and uncle, Agnes and Maurice Powers to come to Huntington to live and attend Marshall College, in 1948 he arrived for the first time.  He stayed for the next 24 years.

At Marshall – he was tenacious about his desire to play ball, having been chased out of the gym by Marshall’s freshman coach who said, “Lamb, you’re too small.” Jim proved him wrong.  He came back his sophomore year and played three seasons on Cam Henderson’s Big Green fast break.  His good fortune continued at Marshall when he met his future wife, Nohad Shaar.  They were married after graduation on May 30, 1952.  Jim was offered an invitation to try out for the Baltimore Bullets – but opted instead to put his newly earned teaching credentials to use at St. Joseph Central Catholic High School with the bonus of an opportunity to coach basketball.  The fit was like a glove.  At the age of 22, (not much older than some of his players and students) he began.  He had an innate ability and love for both teaching and coaching.  On the coaching front, he won several State Catholic titles (1957, 1960, 1961 and 1967) and a bit of notoriety on the local sports scene.    When asking former St. Joe students, players and fellow teachers their memories of Jim, the two words that were used consistently when describing him were “talent” and “respect.”  But the respect was mutual.  What he gave to the St. Joe community, he would say he received tenfold.   When asked by reporters about coaching at a larger school or at a higher level he said “I would have to think long and hard about leaving St. Joe.  I have the most desirable relationship with everyone connected with the school.” He remained a part of the fabric of the school for 20 years.

In 1970 Jim took a 1 year sabbatical to earn his Masters in Economics at Ohio University. Nohad and Jim had four children, Debbie, Carol, Richard and Patrick.  In September of 1972 he was ultimately lured away by long time college friend Albie Maier, for a job opportunity at Haddon Township High School in New Jersey. Here he taught history and economics and coached varsity basketball.  He finished his varsity coaching career in 1978 having accomplished his lifetime 300th win and having coached his 500th game.  He retired from teaching in 1997.  Going full circle, he and Nohad bought a house in his hometown of Westerly and spent time in between New Jersey and Rhode Island, enjoying their children and watching their grandchildren grow, and playing lots of golf.

In his lifetime there were many accolades and awards.  But when asked about his successes he would only mention two – first, the love of his family and second, the opportunity he was given to financially and emotionally support his family doing something that he truly loved.  That was success for Jim Lamb.

 

 

2016 Honorees

 

Mr. Luigi “Gee Gee Narcise”
(March 8, 1924 – October 2, 2006)
Class of 1941

In 1947, the West Virginia Catholic High School Basketball Tournament moved to Huntington from Clarksburg.  That same year, a young man named Luigi “Gee Gee” Narcise was one of the first volunteers that tournament chairman Frank Lobardo named to his staff.  He immediately assigned Gee Gee to work as his assistant in program sales because, Lobardo said, “no one could outwork him.”

The 1987 SJI marked the SJI’s 10th anniversary and yet an older and still enthusiastic Gee Gee Narcise still outworked everyone as the lone continuous carryover from the old state Catholic tournament staff.  At Frank Lobardo’s death in 1978, Gee Gee had already assumed the chairman’s duties as the director of program sales.

It was a happy marriage.  The revenue Gee Gee generated for the SJI was a major factor of the tournament’s success.  But he saw it as his “repayment” for helping him build his own career as the region’s leading commercial real estate broker.  “It opened many doors for me,” he said.  “For that, I’ll always be grateful.” Such gratitude is mutual.

The SJI was grateful to Gee Gee for his unshakable loyalty and devotion.  The 1987 SJI Tournament was dedicated to him.

LUIGI “GEE GEE” NARCISE, 82, of Huntington, W.Va., died Monday, October 2, 2006, in Rome, Italy. Gee Gee was born March 8, 1924, in Huntington, W.Va., to the late Pasquale Narcise and Julia Bianco. He was also preceded in death by brothers Rocco and Aldo Narcise. Surviving him is one son, John Narcise; grandchildren, John L. Narcise and Savannah Narcise; daughter-in-law, Buffy Morre Narcise; a nephew, Rocco Aldo and nieces, Linda, Maria, and Julia. Gee Gee was the owner/broker of Narcise Realty Co./Narcise Produce. He was a veteran of the U.S. Army and attended St. Joseph Catholic Church. He was past president of the Huntington Junior Chamber of Commerce, Knights of Columbus, Huntington Memorial Field House, Sons of Italy, and ushered at St. Joseph Catholic Church for 47 years.

 

Mr. William H. Bronosky
Class of 1949

Mr. William H. Bronosky was born in Huntington on April 12, 1931, a son of Gordon and Marcella (Sally) Bronosky.  His siblings (John, Margaret and Evelyn) also graduated from St. Joseph Central.

Bill’s honorable service for 4 years in the United States Navy during the Korean War provided him the opportunity to serve his country and see the world.  After completing his tour of duty in the military, Bill attended Devry in Chicago for 24 consecutive months to earn certifications in electronics.  This education supplied the foundation for a career in what was then the brave new world of computers.

A long and successful career with IBM began in 1956.  He installed and repaired countless computer systems in an ever-changing arena.  IBM honored Bill with a number of national customer service awards.  He retired from IBM in 1991.

Bill captured portions of St. Joseph Central’s history as a photographer for decades.  High school graduation ceremonies and group pictures from the 1980’s into the early 21st century were likely chronicled by Bill.  His illustrations with the camera similarly preserved the competition and pageantry of the SJI and the State Catholic High School Basketball Tournament.  The SJI Committee named Bill to the tournament’s Hall of Fame in 1993 and bestowed further recognition by dedicating the 2006 SJI to him.

Bill volunteers at a myriad of other catholic school and church events, remaining an active participant in the community.  His current and former memberships include the OLOF Parish Council, Knights of Columbus and American Legion.

He married another St. Joseph Central graduate, Rose Mary Theuring, in 1955.  They have 4 children who are also graduates of St. Joseph Central —Joe (Maria), Diane Setter (Chris), Paula  Bruce (Rob), and Mary Bates (Donald).  In addition, they have 6 grandchildren—Ben Bronosky, David and Bridget Setter, Nathan Bruce, Lindsay and Jenna Bates.

 

Mr. Larry S. Verbage
Class of 1969

Mr. Larry S. Verbage was born on April 25, 1951 to the late Shag and Margaret Verbage, who were also graduates of St. Joseph Central.  All 9 of his brothers and sisters (5 boys and 5 girls) attended St. Joseph’s from the first grade through the 12th grade.

Larry began playing Little League Baseball in 1959, then Babe Ruth in 1964.  He added basketball to his athletic career in middle school  where he continued playing both sports all through high school, for all 4 years, making All-State in both sports.

From 1970-1973, Larry attended Marshall University on a baseball scholarship and was a 4-year starter.  During his senior year, Larry was the team’s captain , leading his team to the College Baseball Regionals in Carbondale, IL.

Larry has coached many teams since 1974 that included St. Joseph and travel teams.  He has also played American Legion Baseball and Industrial League Baseball over the years.

From 1974-2013, Larry served on the All-tournament committee for the State Catholic Basketball Tournament and SJI.

In 1990, Larry began coaching Little League Softball.  In 1994, he started the Diamond Dusters Softball program and has traveled far and wide to get the word out about how good our local players are.  His teams have been to 5 National Tournaments and won the prestigious Colorado Sparkler, a 195 team National Invitational Tournament.  His teams have sent over 75 girls to college on athletic scholarships.

From 1993-1996, Larry coached softball at HEHS where the team was AAA State Champions in 1996.  From 2002-2005, he coached softball at St. Joseph Central where they were the 2002 State Runner-up and State Champions in 2003.

He married Vickie Meadows Verbage in 1978 and they have a daughter, Ali, who played softball at Virginia Tech.  Ali is married to Hans Heinmiller and they have 2 children, Kane (age 5) and Presley (age 2) and they reside in Atlanta, Georgia.

 

The Sisters of the Congregation of St. Joseph 

Seated left to right: Sisters Rita Ann Teichman, CSJ, Nancy Conway, CSJ, and Pat Bergen, CSJ
Standing left to right: Sisters Joan Kreyenbuhl, CSJ, Marguerite    O’Brien, CSJ, Christine Parks, CSJ, and Jeannie Masterson, CSJ

Under the direction of Mother St. John, seven sisters journeyed from France to America in 1836 to work with deaf children in St. Louis at the invitation of the Bishop of that city. From there, new Congregations of St. Joseph spread rapidly throughout the United States and Canada.

As Sisters of St. Joseph in the 21st century, we continue to respond to the unmet and critical needs of our contemporary society and world. Our mission and vision, informed by a deep and pervasive love of God and neighbor without distinction, move us always toward ways to respond, in a spirit of unifying, reconciling love, to the needs of our local communities, the call of the Church, the people of God, and the challenges of the global community within which we live.

Their mission flows from the purpose for which the congregation exists: We live and work that all people may be united with God and with one another. It is rooted in the mission of Christ, the same mission which continually unfolds in His church, “That all may be one as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; I pray that they may be one in Us.” (John 17:21)

Their congregation is rooted in our commitment to our mission and charism. We commit ourselves to build and deepen our relationships as sisters and associates, and to be faithful to our spiritual practice of sharing the “State of the Heart” and “Order of the House,” to respond to the unmet needs of our time. Recognizing that we are called to incarnate our mission and charism in our world in fidelity to God’s call in the Gospel, we commit ourselves to these Generous Promises:

  • To take the risk to surrender our lives and resources to work for specific systemic change in collaboration with others so that the hungers of the world might be fed.
  • To recognize the reality that Earth is dying, to claim our oneness with Earth and to take steps now to strengthen, heal and renew the face of Earth.
  • To network with others across the world to bring about a shift in the global culture from institutionalized power and privilege to a culture of inclusivity and mutuality .
  • To be mutually responsible and accountable for leadership in the congregation.

 

 Mr. Maurice G. Powersmaurice8
(1899-1976)

The “Yankee,”  Maurice G. Powers, left his beloved Rhode Island for the hills of southern West Virginia to develop the oil and gas field of the tri-state area.  Although he was born in New York City on February 28, 1899, he soon adopted West Virginia as a new and abiding home; he quickly joined with us in the pride of being always free mountaineers.

Maurice had a deep interest in athletics and he immediately began to devote much of his free time to organizing and developing groups to foster and encourage sports programs in the parochial school system.

Though he was an avid fan and firm supporter of Marshall College from the early 1930’s, it was his even greater dedication to the athletic programs locally at St. Joseph’s, and on a Diocesan scale to the WVCHSAA, which endeared him to his host of admirers.  He was one of a group of men who literally begged for what they could get in order that the students could enjoy full participation in athletics.  When our Diocesan program was in need of expansion and development, he aided considerably with his experience in the foundation of what has become known in more recent years as the West Virginia Catholic High School Athletic Association.  His presence at the WVCHS basketball tournament was a familiar one until illness prevented him from active participation.  He attended this annual event not merely as a spectator, but as a willing worker who did not back off from any assignment in whatever capacity he was needed.

Maurice served as President of the St. Joseph’s High School Association for more than a quarter century, until he resigned from this office in 1974.

 

Mr. F. Joseph Eschleman
(June 18, 1929 – October 19, 2013)

Joseph Eschleman, “Joe,” was born on June 28, 1929 in Columbus, Ohio, the third child of F. Joseph and Margaret Grady Eschleman. Joe and his older siblings, William and Nanci, were raised in Columbus where they attended parochial schools.

At age 17, Joe enlisted in the army and was a veteran of WWII.  After being honorably discharged from active duty, Joe enlisted in the Ohio National Guard 66th Infantry Regiment Combat Team where he served as Staff Sergeant of the motor pool at Fort Hayes, Columbus.  In addition, he attended The Ohio State University.

One of Joe’s greatest joys was assisting with all aspects of the state Catholic basketball tournament, which became the SJI.  Long after the Eschleman boys graduated from St. Joseph Central, Joe continued with the SJI in many different roles.  This was his passion.

Joe was an active member of Our Lady of Fatima Catholic Church.  His hobbies included traveling with his beloved wife, golf (playing and watching on TV), gardening, reading and spending time with his family.  He was an avid historian and was very passionate about American history.  Like Winston Churchill, Joe believed, “Those that fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.”

He served a variety of organizations in Huntington including President of the St. Joseph Central PTA (1971-72), Board of Directors for the Huntington Area Chamber of Commerce, River Cities United Way, Director of the National Alliance of Businessmen (1972-73), President of the Huntington Advertising Club (1970-71), Huntington City Council (1977), General Chairman of the sustaining membership enrollment drive for Boy Scouts of America; Chairman/Executive Committee Member of the SJI (1978-90), and chairman of the Veteran’s Memorial Field House Authority (1986-88).

At the age of 21, Joe met the love of his life, Jane Snyder and they were married in November 1952.  They had six children – Thomas, Joseph (Pamela), Nanci Marshall, Stephen (deceased), Michael and Mary Beaty (Michael).  In addition, they have 11 grandchildren – Joe Randolph, Victoria Ahrens, Michelle Fell, Mike Dragovich, Christina Johnson, Christian Eschleman, Jennifer Dado, Ian, Philip, Benjamin and Isaiah Beaty and 6 great-grandchildren – Brooklyn Thornhill-Johnson, Bella and Jack Dragovich, Alex Randolph, Lucy Ahrens and Kennedy Fell.

 

Dr. Paul A. Blair and Dr. Jane A. Kurucz

Dr. Paul Blair is board certified in both Facial Plastic Surgery and Ear Nose and Throat surgery. He was born and raised in West Virginia, and studied at WVU for both his undergraduate work and medical school. After graduating, Dr. Blair spent two years in the Air Force. He then spent five years teaching as faculty at Tulane Medical School. Dr. Blair moved back to Huntington in 1988, where he has practiced since. In 2003, he moved his practice to Teays Valley, where he has a brand new office and state of the art facilities, along with Alex Alexa Medical Spa.

Dr. Jane Kurucz is certified by the American Board of Surgery. She studied at WVU medical school, and had her residency at Alton Oshsner Foundation Hospital in New Orleans, Louisiana. From 2001-2004, Dr. Kurucz served as the St Mary’s Medical Center Cancer Liaison Physician, and was the co-director of the St. Mary’s Medical Center Breast Center in 2003. Dr. Kurucz recently joined the National Breast Center Consortium of Breast Centers, Inc. (NCBC). The membership allows for networking with fellow breast professionals, enhances collegial sharing and provides valuable information that will assist in patient care. The NCBC conferences address the latest issues such as “The Role of Oncology Nursing in Breast Cancer Care: From Prevention to Palliation,” “Mammography Positioning, Beyond the Basics,” “Breast Sonography” and “Breast Cancer: How Close is a Cure?” In 2004, Dr. Kurucz joined Dr. Blair at his office in Teays Valley, where she sees patients who are dealing with breast cancer and other breast issues.

The Blairs have four children, all of which are graduates of St. Joseph Central—Kathryne “Katy” Blair, Elizabeth “Betsey” Blair (Daniel Puhek), Suzanne Blair-Rodgers (Derrick) and Robert “Rob” Blair.

 

 

2015 Honorees

Houvouras

Mr. Andrew J. Houvouras, Jr.

(September 10, 1919 – September 19, 2003)
Class of 1937

The son of a Greek immigrant father and Italian-American mother, Mr. Houvouras (Andy) was a starting member of the 1937 State Catholic Champion basketball team, who went on to place 3rd in the National Catholic Championship in Chicago. He received a basketball scholarship to Marshall College where he played under the legendary Cam Henderson.

After completing Navy Officer Training School, Andy was sent to Newport, RI. Prior to his deployment to the South Pacific, he met Patricia Hubbard, a striking local girl with auburn hair and blue eyes. Six weeks after first meeting, they were married at a small Newport chapel before he headed off to war. Following the end of the war, Andy returned to Huntington with his new wife. He and his brother-in-law, Leo DiPiero, launched Huntington Plaiting, Inc. Over the years, they were involved in the creation and expansion of businesses such as Sterling Supply, C.I. Thornburg, Steel of WV, Eastern Heights Shopping Center and Heritage Bank (now United Bank).

When Andy learned that Senator Kennedy was running for President, he, David Fox and Boy Myers volunteered to work for the campaign and were named co-chairs of the effort in Cabell County. Andy left for nearly 2 months to work for the campaign and spent a great deal of time with JFK, brother Bobby and brother-in-law Sargent Shriver. Andy and Pat attended Kennedy’s inauguration in DC, and in 1964 was chosen as 1 of only 910 people in the nation to be interviewed by the JFK Library regarding his insights into the Kennedy campaign and presidency.

In the years that followed, Andy became active in a number of political and social causes. He was selected as the West Virginia Peace Corps representative, appointed to the national Board of Directors for the War on Poverty, and was a member of the first Human Rights Commission in Huntington. He and his cousin Ted Houvouras established the Houvouras Scholarship Fund at Marshall, honoring the 4 Houvouras brothers who emigrated from Greece to the US.

Andy served as president of the St. Joseph Parish Council, St. Joseph PTO, St. Joseph Athletic Association  as well as the high school board. In recognition of his many accomplishments in the community, he was elected to the Huntington Wall of Fame and named one of Huntington’s “50 Most Influential People” by the editors of The Herald-Dispatch.

Andy and Pat were blessed with a large family, having 7 children – Drew, Tom, Rick, Anne, Mary, Amy and Jack as well as 15 grandchildren and numerous great-grandchildren.

 

WeilerMr. James J. Weiler, II
Class of 1947

After graduating from St. Josephs, Mr. James J. Weiler attended Mt. St. Mary’s College and was captain of the Jr. Varsity Basketball Team in 1947-1948. He then attended Marshall University where he played tennis and obtained his BS in 1951.

Mr. Weiler completed Infantry School at the Indiantown Gap Military Reservation in Pennsylvania in November 1951 and Airborne School in Fort Benning, Georgia in January 1952. He received the Parachute Badge and the Korean Service Medal with one Bronze Star as a member of the 5th Regimental Combat Team.

Mr. Weiler received three Varsity letters in basketball and four Varsity letters in baseball during his high school athletic career at St. Josephs.  He was the Chairman of the SJI from 1985-1987, retiring from his service in 1990.

His current and former memberships include the Knights of Columbus, Elks #313, American Legion Post #16, M Club, Serra Club, Huntington Manufacturer’s Club (past President), Rotary Club, Engineers Club and the NRA.

James is married to Betty and they have six children – David (Kay), James (Sally), Robert (Lisa), Mark, Michael (Hannah), and Elizabeth Jenkins (Evan) as well as 11 grandchildren – Andrew, Adam, Guthrie (deceased), James, Cece, Tess, Sophie, Emerson, Darby, Hollin, Charles and Olivia.

 

DeBordMr. Donald E. DeBord
Class of 1951

Mr. Donald E. DeBord was born on May 9, 1933. His early years involved assisting his mother, Anna, and three siblings in running the family business, DeBord’s Dairy. Unfortunately, his father, Leo, died at a young age in 1938.

Don was the Valedictorian of the Class of 1951. He then graduated from the University of Cincinnati in 1957 with a degree in Metallurgical Engineering and began his career with Inco Alloys International. During his 40 year career with Inco, he became VP and GM serving as CEO of this international company with multiple production plants in the US and UK with worldwide marketing and sales.

Upon his retirement in 1999, Don became the Director of the Cabell-Huntington Coalition for the Homeless. In addition to the Coalition, he has served as president of the St. Joseph High School PTO, Our Lady of Fatima School Board and Parish Council, Barboursville Pee Wee and Little League Baseball. He is a charter member of Our Lady of Fatima where he serves as a Eucharistic Minister.

Don has served as a volunteer math tutor at Our Lady of Fatima School and as a CASA volunteer for abused and neglected children. Also, he was inducted into the Greater Huntington Wall of Fame in 2007.

Don is married to Donna and they have four children – Beth Carter (Billy), Theresa Hickman (Dwayne), Joseph DeBord (Jann) and David DeBord (Bobbi) as well as 12 grandchildren, 2 step-grandchildren and 8 great-grandchildren.

 

RussoMr. James J. Russo
(January 4, 1938 – August 21, 1983)
Class of 1955

Mr. James Joseph “Jimmy Joe” Russo, loving son of John Russo and Nellie Lombardo Russo Linsenmeyer, loving brother to Dr. Michael Russo, James Linsenmeyer, Dorothy Nenni, Nancy Aluise, Rosalie George, Virginia Linsenmeyer, Frances Maier and Georgann Kirtley. He attended Marshall University after graduating from St. Joseph’s and received his BBA in 1962.

Jimmy was the President of North Pole Distributing and Ashland Beverage Corporation. He and his family were active parishioners of  St. Joseph Catholic Church, and he was a Knight of Columbus (4th Degree), a member of the National Beer Wholesalers Association, and Alpha Phi Omega (MU’s national service fraternity).

Jimmy was a president of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon and an honorary member since 1980.  He was a past director of the Marshall Alumni Association and past chairman of the Eagle Scout Board of Review.

Jimmy Joe had a passion for youth sports and held various positions with the WV State Catholic Basketball Tournament, Marshall University Memorial Tournament and the SJI.  He was also a Commissioner of the Cammack Little League Baseball and Midget League Football.

Jimmy was named an Honored West Virginian by Governor Arch Moore and he was a member of the Disabled American Veterans Post 2, receiving the Distinguished Service Award in 1977. He was also a Kentucky Colonel and Admiral in the Cherry River Navy.

Jimmy Joe and Barbara’s 6 children are – James Vincent Russo (deceased), Gwendolyn Ann Russo Thomas (Ed), Paul Anthony Russo, Diane Marie Russo, Margaret Elizabeth Russo Clifford (Jon) and Jeffery Jude Russo (Laurie), as well as 12 grandchildren.

 

ZitterMrs. Regina “Jerry” K. Zitter
(June 21, 1916 – April 11, 2000)

Mrs. Regina K. Zitter, better known as Jerry, was born in Fort Recovery, Ohio and moved to Huntington, West Virginia in 1945. Together with some local businessmen, the Zitters started Sterling Supply Company. After the death of her husband, Jack, in 1972, Jerry took over the business and was voted “Women in Business Advocate of the Year” in 1991.

To benefit high school students at St. Josephs, she established the Anne Klim Scholarship Fund. She served on many Board of Directors in the area such as Birthright, YMCA, Boys and Girls Club of Huntington, Scott Community Center (where she endowed the Maudella Taylor Foundation), United Way of the River Cities, Junior Achievement, the John Marshall Society, and the Carter Woodson Foundation. She was inducted into the Greater Huntington Wall of Fame in 2000.

Jerry started a one-woman campaign to raise funds to build restrooms located at the amphitheater in Ritter Park and she donated the gazebo located atop Gobbler’s Knob. She also contributed to the foot bridge below the rose garden in the park. Jerry had a really love affair with the City of Huntington and its citizens.

Jerry and Jack had 3 children – Tom (Mary Pat), William (Mary Lind), and John (Katherine), as well as 7 grandchildren and 7 great-grandchildren.

 

 

2014 Honorees


MossMr. Robert J. Moss, Jr.
(October 26, 1922 – April 23, 2014)
Class of 1941

After graduating from St. Josephs, Mr. Robert “Buck” J. Moss, Jr. attended Marshall University. He was drafted into the United States Navy and was a veteran of WWII. He was employed by Persinger Supply Company for several years before retirement. After retirement, he became associated with Moss TV.

Mr. Moss was a member of Our Lady of Fatima Parish, the American Legion Post 16 and the Knights of Columbus. In 1980, he was inducted into the SJI Hall of Fame and was very active with all aspects of the tournament’s operations.

Mr. Moss was preceded in death by his beloved wife, Jeanette Salem Moss, who was a 1945 graduate from St. Joseph’s. They were the proud parents of five children that are also graduates of St. Joseph’s – Susan Moss Herbert (Bob), Robert “Bobby” J. Moss, III, Edward Christopher Moss (Cheryl), Michael Thomas Moss and Laura Moss Cline (Timothy).

They had eleven grandchildren – Matthew Herbert, Sarah Herbert Jones (Jon), Lisa Moss Johnson (Evan), Amy Moss Hafertepen (Mark), Robert Joseph Moss, IV, Edward Moss, Jr. (Allie), Shauna Moss Fields (Paul), Jami Moss, Andrew Cline, Christine Cline and Joseph Cline as well as eight great-grandchildren – Cade, Cami, Paxton, Paisley, Noah, Anna, Olivia, and Brody.

 

LeoDr. Leo J. Fleckenstein
Class of 1951

Dr. Leo J. Fleckenstein received a BS Degree in Premedical Science from Xavier University in 1955 and his DDS from St. Louis University School of Dentistry in 1959. Following dental school, he served two years in the United States Navy as a Dental Officer in San Diego, California.

Dr. Fleckenstein has served on many boards, such as the Huntington Dental Society, West Virginia State Board of Dental Examiners, West Virginia State Dental Association, the ADA Endowment and Assistance Fund, and the Academy of Operative Dentistry. In 2012, The Herald-Dispatch selected Dr. Fleckenstein to be the recipient of the Zack Binkley Award for Community Service. He was also named a WSAZ Hometown Hero for helping to establish a dental clinic at the Ebenezer Medical Outreach in Huntington.

Dr. Fleckenstein has been actively involved with our annual reverse raffle and a proud supporter of our SJI for many years.

Dr. Fleckenstein is married to Betty Lou Thompson Fleckenstein, and they have five children  that are all graduates of St. Joseph’s – Dr. James Fleckenstein (Jackie), John Fleckenstein, Chuck Fleckenstein (Angie Ross), Col. David Fleckenstein (Laura) and Dr. Kurt Fleckenstein (Susan) as well as twelve grandchildren – Margaret, Katie, John, Shelby, Joseph, Paul, Mark, Sam, Claire, Adam, Ethan, and Emma.

 

Muth

Mr. Richard A. Muth
Class of 1963

Mr. Richard “Dick” Muth, is the fourth of twelve children born to Bill and Jane Muth. He spent his high school years at Don Bosco High School and St. Josephs. He then graduated from Marshall University in 1967.

Mr. Muth got his start in the family business at age twelve as a stick-boy putting sticks between the stacks of raw lumber. In 1967, he began working    full-time with his father, learning everything he could about the lumber business. Since 1982, Mr. Muth has served as President and CEO of Muth Lumber Company, Inc.

He has been involved his entire adult life in Catholic education at both the Diocesan and local levels. In 1996, Mr. Muth received the esteemed Bishop’s Cross Award. He was a Ernest and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Finalist in 1998 and the Lawrence County, Ohio Businessman of the Year in 2001.

Presently, Mr. Muth serves as a member of the Board of Directors of BB&T, St. Mary’s Hospital, and the State Catholic Board of Education. Mr. Muth is also a member of the Marshall University College of Business Hall of Fame (2004).

Mr. Muth is married to Kathryn “Kit” Shires Muth, and they have three children – Matt (Stacy), Mark (Michele) and Amanda as well as two grandchildren – Maren and Henrick.

 

Tom Houvouras

Mr. Thomas L. Houvouras
Class of 1966

During his four years at St. Josephs, Mr. Houvouras played basketball and baseball for the Irish. He was also President of the freshman, sophomore and junior classes. After graduating from high school in 1966, he received a BS from the University of Dayton in 1970.

Mr. Houvouras served two years in the United States Army, which includes ten months in Vietnam.  Afterwards, he returned to Huntington and began working at Huntington Plating, Inc. In 1982, he became President of the company and still continues in that capacity today.

Mr. Houvouras became involved with the St. Joe Invitational (SJI) in the late 1970’s. He started as its Chairman in the early 1990’s and remained in that position until 2013, which was the 36th Annual SJI.  It is because of his vision and dedication  that the tournament was such a successful community event.

He was an assistant coach for the boys’ freshman basketball team in 1999 and later was an assistant coach for the boys’ varsity basketball team.

Mr. Houvouras has four children that are all graduates of St. Joseph’s – Andrea McDowell (Jeff), Arica Simmons (James), Ashley Houvouras, and Marc Houvouras as well as five grandchildren, River, Kamryn, Carson, Reef and Maggie.

 

Woelfel

Mr. Michael A. Woelfel
Class of 1970

After graduating from St. Josephs in 1970, Mr. Woelfel received a BA in History from Marshall University in 1974. He received his Doctor of Jurisprudence from West Virginia University in 1978.

Mr. Woelfel has been very active in his law career, from Juvenile Court Referee for the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals (1980-2010), Adjunct Professor in Legal Studies and Criminal Justice at Marshall University (1980-2004), and partner of Woelfel and Woelfel (1978-today), just to name a few.

Since 1992, Mr. Woelfel has served as a member of the Board of Directors of Forest Management, Inc. (Vice President 1996-1997). This is a non-profit corporation dedicated to the purchase and operation of residential properties to provide housing for individuals with chronic mental health issues.

Mr. Woelfel was an assistant coach for the St. Joe’s boys’ varsity basketball team from 1996-2002. He was also an assistant coach for the Huntington High boys’ varsity basketball team from 2002-2007, winning the AAA State Championship in 2005, 2006, and 2007.

Mr. Woelfel is married to Julia, and they have two sons that are both graduates of St. Joseph’s – Matthew Woelfel (Stacie) and Michael Woelfel as well as three grandchildren – Colin, Carter, and Mady.