Michael T. “Mike” Roarke (1930-2019) was born on November 8, 1930 to Walter J. and Mary T. (nee Riley) Roarke in West Warwick, Rhode Island where he was raised through his high school years. Vice President of the West Warwick High School Class of 1948, Mike was a schoolboy star in baseball and football in
Tag: Sports – Football
William T. Halloran was the former Assistant Postmaster of Providence Post Office and for many years one of the nation top football officials, both in professional and collegiate circles. His part-time refereeing and umpiring avocation were paralleled by full-time work for the Providence Post Office. He was assistant postmaster when he retired in 1963 after
Charles A. “Rip” Engle was Head Football Coach at both Brown University and Penn. State. In sixteen years with the Nittany Lions, he never had a losing season. Mr. Engle is a member of the College Football Hall of Fame, and a past President of the American Football Coaches Association.
Bernard V. Buonanno was a graduate of Classical High School, teacher of French and Latin, Counselor, and, in 1936, returned to coach three sports, football, track, and basketball. He brought Classical championships in football and indoor track. He was a former member of the State Board of Regents and the Rhode Island Board of Education.
Joe Paterno, 1926-2012, was one of the winningest coaches in the nation. He never had a losing season during his tenure as Head Coach of head coach of the Penn State Nittany Lions from 1966 to 2011. A Brooklyn native, he attended Brown University where he played football both as the quarterback and a cornerback.
Commander John A. McIntyre was a former U.S. Navy flying ace in World War II and the Korean War. He held distinctions that included the Silver Star, two distinguished Flying Crosses, and four Air Medals. He was a former three-sport star athlete for LaSalle Academy, and later an All-America football player at Notre Dame. A
Tuss McLaughry, 1893-1974, was the famed coach of Brown University’s “Iron Man” team of 1926. “Tuss” coached at Amherst for thirty-five years, then at Brown, and Dartmouth. He was President of the American Football Coaches Association, and the long-time Secretary of that organization. The Tuss McLaughry Award is given to a distinguished American (or Americans)
James W. Norman of South Kingstown, was a multi-award winning Sports Information Director at the University of Rhode Island and a radio voice of the Rams for twenty-eight years. He has served as President of Word Unlimited, the Providence Gridiron Club, and the URI Ram’s Club. He is a member of the Universities Athletic Hall
George Pulliam, 1923-1956, is regarded by some as Rhode Island’s greatest all-around schoolboy athlete. At Cranston High, he won All-State honors twice in football and hockey and once in baseball, where he played at every position but catcher. For his extraordinary efforts he was nicknamed “The Cranston Crusher.” He was the fullback and star of
Thomas Eccleston was a famed Rhode Island educational administrator, teacher, and coach, whose Burrillville teams won several state titles in baseball, football, and hockey. He continued on as a hockey coach, becoming what was believed to be the oldest high school coach in the United States. A former Principal and Superintendent in Burrillville, he was
Frederick Douglass “Fritz” Pollard, 1894-1986, came from Lane Tech in Chicago and was known as a great running-back for Brown University in 1915 and 1916. As a freshman he started on the Brown squad that played in the first Rose Bowl game, becoming the first African American to play in the Rose Bowl. In 1916,
Joseph Gomes was the only Rhode Islander to play baseball in the Negro Major Baseball League, and was named an all-star in each of the seven years he played. He compiled a 362-41 pitching record, with a 1.74 earned-run-average in the Majors. He was an extraordinary athlete as a Rhode Island schoolboy all-stater in baseball,
William F. Farley, of Pawtucket, now of Chicago, is businessman who was was chairman and CEO of Fruit of the Loom the highly successful international manufacturer and distributor of basic family apparel for fifteen years (1985-1999). Farley acquired Fruit of the Loom in 1986. Under Farley’s leadership, sales exceeded $2 billion. He has received the
John E. Moran, 1913-1997, served as President and Co-founder of McLaughin & Moran Distributors, which was a recognized leader in its’ field for over fifty years. An outstanding all-state athlete out of LaSalle Academy, he starred for Manhattan College in football and baseball. For the next fifty years, with time out for U.S. Naval service,
Louis A. Cimini, a former resident of North Providence, legendary La Salle Academy coach and teacher, he also served as a football and baseball official as well as the Director of Recreation for North Providence. Cimini was an outstanding athlete in his own right and was inducted into six Halls of Fame and received a
The late Pearce Johnson was one of Rhode Island’s most proficient organizers who became a top executive in USO, producing and directing 125 USO shows as supervisor and President of Providence-Narragansett Bay USO, and a member of the USO National Council. He was awarded by the USO for thirty-five years of distinguished service. He also
Pat Abruzzi is considered one of the best athletes to come out of Rhode Island. Born in Warren on August 29, 1932, Pat was raised in Warren and attended local schools. He played football for Warren High School and was named All Class C football running back in 1948 and 1949. During his senior year
John McLaughlin has been widely recognized for his civic service and contributions to many causes, including disadvantaged youth, and assisting underprivileged children. He was named R.I. “Big Brother of the Year” in 1982 and a recipient of the R.I. March of Dimes Award. A prominent businessman, he retired from McLaughlin & Moran, the highly successful
Michael A. Tranghese is a former collegiate golfer, sports information director and, most notably, the long-term commissioner of one of the most successful college athletic conferences of all-time. Mr. Tranghese was born on February 2, 1944 in Springfield, Massachusetts to Michael and Josephine (nee DiSantis). He attended Cathedral High School in Springfield and upon graduation
The late Walter Stone was superintendent of Rhode Island State Police. Serving as Chief in Providence, he was one of two men to serve as head of Rhode Island’s two largest police forces. He also played football for the Providence Steamrollers, and was a boxer on the police team.
Bernard Thomas “Slick” Pina, 1930-2013, was the oldest and most accomplished of three brothers from South Providence who dominated the local sports scene in the 1950s. Slick’s brother Tommy followed him as a two-time all-state halfback at LaSalle Academy. Joe, who did not attend high school or college, compiled a remarkable record as an amateur
Joseph P. McGee was a three-sport star at Providence College. He instituted basketball at the school, serving as first captain and coach. He also became Varsity Football Coach of the Friars, and a member of the Providence College Hall of Fame. In addition, He was President and General Manager of the Providence Steamroller Football Club.
Dr. William T. Osmanski, 1915-1996, a Providence native, was a football star. A fullback, he was All-American at Holy Cross College and an All-Pro with the Chicago Bears, where he lead the National Football League in yardage in 1939. He played in five NFL Championship games, before becoming a dentist on Chicago.
The Gilbane family, like the Banigans and the Hanleys, were driven from Ireland to America by the potato blight that caused Ireland’s “Great Famine.” William Gilbane, who was born in 1842, arrived in America from County Leitrim with his parents, Thomas and Bridget (O’Brien) Gilbane, in 1845, settling originally at Lime Rock in the Blackstone