From The Press Box
By: Jim Lederman
The announcement on Tuesday, June 14th at Miller Field by the office of House Speaker Bob DeLeo, brought back memories of 1998.
The ‘Light up Miller Field Committee” worked tirelessly for six months to raise the funds ($165,000) to install the lights. The Committee needed the final (25K) to complete the final work.
Senator Robert Travaglini and Representative DeLeo combined to secure the large donation. The Viking student-athletes were one of the first schools in the Northeastern Conference (NEC) to have “Friday Night” football (Ed. Note – three schools in the NEC (Swampscott, Beverly and Saugus) do not have lights at their athletic complex.)
“Mr. Speaker” has once again showed his leadership (he is the second most powerful official in state government). Bob was the driving force to allow Winthrop to get the funds for the work to be done on the drainage project and work at Lewis Lake.
I can always remember sitting with Bob and his late father Al DeLeo in the visiting stands. At DellaRusso Stadium in Revere on Thanksgiving to watch Winthrop defeat Revere on the holiday.
Speaker DeLeo was behind Revere getting the funds for the beautiful $7.8 million new (HDR) Harry DellaRusso Stadium. I would always ask the speaker when he visited the ‘Press Box’ on Thanksgiving, “When will we get the money for a new Miller Field? Bob has always been a big fan and supporter of Viking sports. H e was the ‘Voice of Lady Vikings hoop,’ when his daughter Rachel was playing basketball. Bob celebrated Father’s Day with his new granddaughter.
We salute ‘Mr. Speaker’ for his role in b ringing a ‘new’ Miller Field track and stadium to Winthrop.
Faces in the Crowd
How could I leave ex-WHS half miler Ron Wasson. The proud grandfather of Derek Wasson reminded me at the Pancake Breakfast, he was on the track team with Tommy Cardoza in 1959.
Steve Demetriou, WHS track captain in 1976 was in Oakland, California to watch his beloved Cleveland Cavaliers win the NBA title on Sunday night. Steve is CEO of a fortune five hundred company (Jacobs Engineering) and a longtime season ticket holder for the Cavaliers. Steve was inducted into the WHS Hall of Fame in 2014.
Great to hear Jamie Tipping, CEO of the ‘legendary’ Boston Sail Loft on the waterfront, has recovered from his cancer scare. Jamie was WHS quarterback in 1969 in the WHS-Revere Thanksgiving game. The clam chowder and seafood is awesome!
Kudos to Niki Tsiotos, Lady Vikings captain of the North champions. Niki is transferring to St. Rose of Albany, New York. Niki will play for the division 2 team that plays in the NE-10 Conference (Bentley, Stonehill and Merrimack).
Vikings all-star pitcher Jack Wallace is playing for the Evoshield Canes – AAU team from Georgia. The ‘showcase’ for 17-year old players is the top rated team for high school baseball prospects – 30 players were drafted in 2015.
Let the Games Begin!
Congrats to Tony and Carolyn Fucillo on the engagement of their daughter, Jenny Fucillo, a University of Notre Dame graduate, to Jake Golic.
Jake and Jenny will marry next July (2017), Jake was an Notre Dame football player and Jenny was on the track team at South Bend. Mike Golic Sr. (Jake’s father), an ex-FNL player, can be heard on the “Mike and Mike’ radio show on ESPN.
Pass the Syrup
I was enjoying the French toast at JAC’s Café last week. Winthrop had two legendary breakfast restaurants. Duke’s Diner at the bridge and Brother’s Restaurant, were institutions in town.
A few of the ‘best lunch’ in town spots. A sub sandwich from ‘Terries,’ a corn beef sandwich from Bess and Meyer Krim’s in the Center. (We used to skip school) and lunch at Sablones’ Restaurant!
Oops Dept. – Punchard High School in Andover, Ira Yavner, ex-Viking coached Wakefield High School and led Manchester to a super bowl game. Ira lives in Gloucester.
Summer Memories: A hot dog at Wegner’s at Point Shirley. A sub sandwich at Lupoli’s on Shirley and Cross Streets.
A hot fudge sundae at the Highland Drug Store. A corn beef sandwich at Grunin’s Deli. If you are in the mood for a frappe this summer – my top three are – Twist and Shake in Winthrop, Richardson’s Route 114 in Middleton and Wild Willy’s – route one in York Maine.
Do you remember the fudge and ice cream at Ham’s in Winthrop Center? Summer is here, time to take a walk!
Where is the Beef?
The 2016 Vikings will have one of their biggest offensive lines. Senior Andrew McGrail had a strong off-season and junior Calvin Tufa (260) could be two of the biggest tackles in the NEC. Senior Derek Wasson and Luigi Spinazzola answer the question – “ We have the beef.”