In Memoriam

The following are Trojan baseball players that have passed away.  Thoughts from those that knew them are included to share with you their memories.  This list is a work in progress and will take some time to bring current.  Please send us names that are not on the list.  If you are inclined to do so send a paragraph of what you may remember of the individual.

Ben Breskovich
Lettered 1959, ’60 & ‘61

BenBreskovich

Ben Breskovich passed away at home on March 25, 2016. He was born February 1, 1936 at San Pedro Hospital to Margaret and Frank Breskovich. He was preceded in death by his sister Helen Novelli and nephew Chuck McLuen, and survived by Sister Frances McLuen, nieces and nephews Scott McLuen, Denise Novelli, David Novelli, and Paul Novelli. Ben was also preceded in death by his children Ben and Carolyn, and is survived by his loving wife Stephanie, daughters Juanita Breskovich, Sherrie (Don) Wright, grandchildren Madison Wright, Amanda Berube (Jean Paul), Mary Rose Breskovich, Victoria Breskovich, and John Breskovich; great grandchildren Geoffrey Beckham and Kaylie Berube.

Ben graduated from San Pedro High School in February 1956. He attended Harbor Junior College and graduated from USC in spring of 1958 when he earned his degree in Civil Engineering. He was a member of Phi Kappa Psi fraternity at USC. Ben married Stephanie Belcher in 1959 at Mary Star of the Sea Catholic Church. Ben was an outstanding athlete at San Pedro High and Harbor Junior College, and played baseball for Rod Dedeaux at USC. Ben was named 1967 All World International Softball Congress Player. He was a member of the Los Verdes Golf Club, The Dalmation Club, and the Elks Lodge for many years. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation in Ben’s honor to the San Pedro Boys and Girls Club, and the Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles. A Funeral Mass will be held on Monday April 4, 12:00 noon at Holy Trinity Catholic Church in San Pedro. Interment will be private. Please sign the guestbook at mcnerneysmortuary.com and dailybreeze.com. Published in Daily Breeze on Mar. 31, 2016

Charley Ane

Craig Barnes

1972 College World Series Champions

1973 College World Series Champions

59, passed away on April 25, 2011. Craig was born on October 26, 1951, in Long Beach, California, and was a State Farm Insurance agent in La Verne for the past 33 years.

He was raised in Covina where he attended South Hills High School. He attended Mt. San Antonio College in Walnut and received his Bachelors Degree in Business. He played first baseman and helped lead his team to two national College World Series Championships in 1972 and 1973. He then signed to play for the San Francisco Giants professional baseball team and played for them until 1977.

From 1969 through the ’77 baseball season, Craig played baseball. In 1970, he played first base for the West Covina American Legion team that won the national championship. Craig went on to be MVP at Mt. SAC and played on two national championship teams for USC and coach Rod Dedeaux in 1972 and 1973.  After graduation from USC, Craig signed with the Giants and made it to the Triple A club.

In 1977, the Giants brought back San Francisco Willie McCovey from the San Diego Padres. The odd-man out, Barnes, was on his way to the Giants’ Mexican league team.  They played their games in the jungles, where high humidity and long bus rides wore down even the best hitters. He played against the likes of Cy Acosta, Vic Davilio and Jim Bouton of “Ball Four” fame, who was trying to make a comeback with his new knuckleball.  When he didn’t get called up after rosters were expanded, he hung up his cleats

Craig is survived by his wife of 33 years, Kathy, two sons and one daughter.

Craig was adopted as an infant, and there’s no doubt that that early ingraining experience influenced his lifelong view “that love makes families, not biology” — that the power of love runs thicker than blood.

John Barardino Lettered ’35

Had the ultimate career double play: achieving great success both on the baseball diamond and the silver screen. He lettered at USC in 1937, starting in centerfield. He then spent 11 seasons (1939-42, 46-52) as an infielder in the majors with the St. Louis Browns, Cleveland Indians and Pittsburgh Pirates, sandwiching a stint in the Navy during World War II. He had a lifetime batting average of .249 and helped the Indians win the 1948 World Series. In Hollywood, he made his mark under the stage surname of Beradino. The one-time child actor in “Our Gang” comedies was perhaps best known as Dr. Steve Hardy on the “General Hospital” television series for 33 years. He also appeared in numerous movies and TV shows. In 1993, he received a star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame. He died on May 19, 1996 at the age of 79.

Jim Brideweser

Lettered ’47, ’48 & ’49 USC Baseball Hall of Fame

The shortstop on USC’s first national championship baseball team in 1948. A 3-year (1947-49) letterman, he earned All-American honors in 1949. He then spent 7 seasons (1951-57) in the majors with the Yankees, Orioles, White Sox and Tigers, with a .252 career batting average. He was a member of the Yankees’ 1951-52-53 World Series champions. He then became a baseball coach, first in the minor leagues until 1972 and then returning to California to coach and teach at the high school level before becoming an assistant at El Camino and then Saddleback Junior Colleges. He was the head baseball coach at Saddleback from 1982to 1985 and again in 1989 (he was an assistant there from 1976 to 1981 and from 1986 to 1988). He died on Aug. 25, 1989, at the age of 62.

 Hal Charnofsky

by his brother Stan:   We shared a womb.  Our lives were remarkably parallel, Hal the shortstop, I the second baseman.  When Hal was a junior at USC, Bobby Lillis was the returning shortstop, but Hal was hitting so well, that Rod turned him into an outfielder.   We went to Omaha that year, but lost to Oklahoma.  As a senior, Hal batted somewhere around .430 for the season, and made first team All American; they picked three shortstops that year and no second or third basemen.  The other two were Dick Groat and Harvey Kuenn.

Well, after three or four years in the minor leagues for the Yankees, they decided Hal would be a great manager.  They were right.  He won the pennant at Modesto (Calif. League) and batted about .35O, only Willie Davis batting a point or two higher.  Next year, he won the pennant at Greensboro (Carolina League). And the Yankees decided to promote him to San Antonio–double A (after all, Casey Stengel was quite elderly).   Before spring training, Hal went to San Antonio to speak to the boosters group there.   He left, and quit pro baseball, after a booster asked him, “You gonna have any of them Africans on your team?”

He returned to LA, got his doctorate from USC in sociology, and wrote his dissertation on RACE RELATIONS IN MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL.   He was hired by Cal State U. Dominguez Hills as a professor and spent thirty years there–he won the Distinguished Teaching Award on his campus, and then won the OUTSTANDING PROFESSOR AWARD for the entire Calif. State University system–22 campuses.   Hal was active with the city of Carson Coordinating Council, and recently, they considered naming a new high school after him.   He had three remarkable children and one grandson.  It is painful to think of him gone–why him?  Why not me?  He got pancreatic cancer nine years ago and only lasted three months.  He was the glove to my hand, the lyrics to my music.  It is not that a man dies, it’s that a world dies that is in him. Brother, I miss you.

Jim Conroy

A Trojan icon passed on peacefully, October 3, 2011 in Ottawa Canada. His teammates described him as skilled, tenacious and respected. He was in movies when many Trojan athletes were extras. His summer job while at SC included working with the steel rebar on the LA River and unloading cargo at the docks.  Jim was a fun loving and likable guy. He loved Rod Dedeaux, his team, tacos, and a good discussion!

His wife, Carol, attributes his very quick and unexpected heart failure to Alzheimer’s, which was diagnosed in 2006.

Conroy was born October 18, 1937 in Vancouver, but his family moved to Long Beach, California, when he was four. Along with obtaining a civil engineer degree, Jim was a 2 sport star for USC.  He was a pitcher on the ’58 baseball CWS championship team and the quarterback and captain on the ’58 football team.  Drafted by the Buffalo Bills in the first draft of the upstart American Football League, Jim opted to play in Canada.  Conroy played nine Canadian Football League seasons honored in 2001 by selection into the Hall of Fame. Conroy is survived by his wife, Carol, daughters Jennifer, Joan and Julie, step-daughter Debby and three brothers, all still residing in Southern California.

We lost another good one, but maybe he can help cheer all our Trojan teams on from a better place. We plan to have a moment of silence in memory of our beloved teammate at our November 10 Trojan Baseball Banquet at Galen Center.

Tony DeCarbo

Pitcher, Lettered ’56, ’57 & ’58 Majored in Dentistry

Denise Dedeaux (July 20, 1947 to November 20, 2013)

Published in the Los Angeles Times:  Denise Dedeaux, born in Los Angeles on July 20, 1947, passed away unexpectedly on November 19, 2013 in Glendale. She was the cherished daughter of the late Rod and Helen Dedeaux. The family lived for many years in the Los Feliz area and ultimately moved to Glendale, where Denise continued to live. She attended Mother of God Council Grammar School and Immaculate Heart High School, and remained an active alumna of both. She followed her dad and siblings to USC, where she was always a loyal Trojan sports fan. Her career revolved around the family’s business, Dart Entities, where she worked alongside her father and brothers. She was a long time member and volunteer at USC’s Trojan League, Town and Gown, and the Baseball Alumni Association, where in 2011 she received their Lifetime Merit Award. An avid and gifted photographer, she was the curator of the family’s history and memorabilia, especially that of her iconic father, Rod Dedeaux’s, famed Trojan baseball-coaching career of 45 years. Denise is survived by her sister, Michele Dedeaux Engemann (Roger), and brothers, Justin (Mary Lin) and Terry Dedeaux (Christine). In addition, she was a devoted aunt to 11 nieces and nephews, six grandnieces, and two grandnephews, and a godparent to several additional children. Besides her siblings and extended family, Denise will be sorely missed by her beloved longtime friend and fellow Trojan, Shelly Andrens. Funeral Mass was held at Church of Our Savior,

Rod Dedeaux

 (February 17, 1914 – January 5, 2006) Born in New Orleans, Louisiana, Rod died at age 91 of complications from a December 2, 2005 stroke.  He was survived by his wife of 66 years, the former Helen Jones, and their four children. Rod was a member of the first class of inductees into the College Baseball Hall of Fame.

Rod attended USC and after playing professional baseball he returned to coach at SC and built the USC baseball program into the greatest college program in the history of the game.  He spearheaded the growth of the amateur game nationally and internationally.  He served as coach of the United States team at both the 1964 and 1984 Olympics.

 In his 45-year tenure at USC, he led the Trojans to an unprecedented 11 national titles, 28 conference championships and an overall record of 1,332-571-11, for a .699 winning percentage. He was named Coach of the Year six times by the College Baseball Coaches Association and was inducted into its Hall of Fame in 1970.

For his lifetime accomplishments, Rod Dedeaux was honored by Collegiate Baseball magazine as NCAA Division I Coach of the Century and called “the game’s true Master Coach”.

Rod retired as head coach in 1986 and moved to the “front office” as director of baseball at USC, where he advised on the Trojan baseball program.

Major league manager’s Tommy Lasorda and Sparky Anderson have both stated that Rod Dedeaux ranks as one of the all-time finest coaches, at any level, ever to grace a baseball field.  Dedeaux produced many major league prospects during his coaching career, some of whom went on to become household names as big league stars — Hall of Famer

Rod’s love of baseball and USC was unparalleled and while continually asked to manage in the major leagues he remained at USC for his entire coaching career.  Having built a successful trucking business Rod coached his entire career without accepting a salary.

To this day his former players remain loyal to his memory as the most loved and revered coach in the history of the game.

William Edwards

Bruce Gardner

In memory of Bruce Gardner (Played ’58, ’59 ’60) USC All American pitcher and a key member of the 1958 National Championship Team.  The following are his dreams, accomplishments and his tragic death.

For Bruce, baseball was the only thing that brought meaning to his life. His love and focus on baseball was intense and when baseball slipped from his grasp and was no longer a reality he could not keep his life in balance or in perspective.  After baseball Bruce’s life was paved with torment and anguish and tragically it all came to an end on June 7, 1971, when he took his life.

Early Years: Bruce Gardner was born October 30, 1938 and was an only child.  Growing up in Los Angeles Bruce went to Fairfax high school.  Elected Student Body President, Bruce had everything going for himself, popular among his schoolmates, a good student and a superb athlete.

Everything came easy for Bruce and his accomplishments were many and varied.  His career focus might have been music as he played the piano since the age of 10 but Bruce’s great love was baseball.  At his mothers urging Bruce turned down a baseball contract with the Chicago White Sox and accepted a scholarship to USC and to play for the best college program in America.

College Years: With ease Bruce fit into college life.  A popular all around student, Bruce was a member of Delta Chi fraternity and in honorary groups such as Blue Key and Skull and Dagger, also finding time to perform in the Drama Club.

I was a junior and Bruce a sophomore when we met and played in 1958 on our National Championship team.  I can’t recall any teammate that laughed or smiled more than Bruce.  Our young years at USC were wonderful years full of fun and dreams of what we hoped would be.  I still see Bruce’s beaming bright smile.  And when Bruce was on the pitcher’s mound we all smiled for he just dominated the batters like so few pitchers could.

Bruce’s college athletic accomplishes:

All Conference, ’58 ’59 ’60, All College World Series team ’60, All American ‘60

Ranks 2nd in USC Career Wins.  Ranks 6th in USC innings pitched.  Ranks 10th in USC Career Strike Outs

Ranks 1st in USC Regular Single Season Wins.  Ranks 1st in single season innings pitched (holds NCAA record) Ranks 10th in USC Single Season Strike Outs.

Professional Career:  With a shattered arm…came shattered dreams

Bruce signed a bonus contract out of USC with the LA Dodgers.  He had everything going for himself and not one person doubted that Bruce would soon be pitching in the Majors.  But fate and circumstances sent Bruce in another direction.  Because of the military draft at the time, most athletes opted for a 6-month military training in the off-season.  While at Ft. Ord Bruce suffered an injury to his left arm which is believed to be the cause for his pitching problems.  This injury along with hurting his arm a few years later when he tried to rush his conditioning caused bursitis and marked the end to what was to be a promising career.

Bruce was 0-1 in Montreal, 20-4 in Reno, 1-5 at Spokane, 10-4 in Great Falls and finally 1-2 in Salem.  Bruce, his arm aching with pain now feared the worst, he was on a down hill road and was filled with intense despair.  His career was over and his dreams of reaching the Major’s were gone.  His dreams soon turn to nightmares.

After Baseball: Bruce tried turning to his other talents in search of fulfillment and success.  Music had always been an interest in Bruce’s life so he did nightclub stints as a pop pianist and ballad singer.  Not finding the peace of mind to ease the pain of being out of baseball Bruce later became a stock and mutual funds broker.  Although he did well financially, Bruce quit the brokerage business, as it also offered no relief of the agony he felt over his baseball career.   Bruce decided to go into high school teaching and coaching.  He liked kids and here he would again be close to his number one love, baseball.

Feelings of despair not playing baseball grew more painful.  Being a coach placed a spotlight on baseball and brought closer the memories Bruce needed to get over and put behind him but he could not.  His resentment for being out of baseball continued to fester.  His feelings of anguish intensified.  His thoughts of his not making the majors became unbearable.  Finally, it was too much to endure and on June 7, 1971, at the age of 32 Bruce took his college diploma and his All American plaque with him to the USC pitching mound where he had experienced his greatest days of glory and there with a single shot, he took his life.  Obsessed and feeling inescapably trapped Bruce was consumed with the past. He could not, would not, and did not let go.

With every baseball season that goes by at some point I think of Bruce and what a terrible loss it was that did not need to happen.  Submitted by teammate Ken Guffey Miller

John Garten

Cliff Gewecke

Died August 8, 2014 Infielder on the 1953 team

Joe Gonzales   Died age 82, November 1996.

Lettered ’35, ”36 & ’37; USC Baseball Hall of Fame

Joe Gonzales pitched USC’s first-ever no-hitter, doing so in an 8-0 win against Stanford in 1937 (it would be 24 years before another Trojan threw a no-hitter). He also tossed a one-hitter in 1935 against UCLA (a 4-0 USC victory). The 3-year (1935-37) starter earned All-Conference first team honors in 1937. He went on to play in the majors with the Boston Red Sox in 1937.

Kent Hadley  Born: 12 / 17 / 1934 at Pocatello, ID Died: 3 / 10 / 2005 at Pocatello, ID

USC first baseman Kent Hadley got his collegiate baseball start at Pasadena City College. The 6’3, 200 pounds Hadley was a power hitter transferred to USC making All-American his senior year in 1956. Hadley, the son of Mr. and Mrs. Glenn Hadley of Pocatello, Idaho hit 18 home runs his senior year, three more than USC’s Rudy Regalado in 1951.  Rudy went on to play for the Cleveland Indians.

Kent Hadley was 23 years old when he broke into the big leagues on September 14, 1958, with the Kansas City Athletics

Kent Hadley Hitting Stats

Yr

Age

Team

G

AB

R

H

2B

3B

HR

GRSL

RBI

BB

IBB

SO

SH

SF

HBP

GIDP

AVG

OBP

SLG

1958

24

Athletics

3

11

1

2

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

4

0

0

0

0

.182

.182

.182

1959

25

Athletics

113

288

40

73

11

1

10

0

39

24

0

74

2

3

1

6

.253

.310

.403

1960

26

Yankees

55

64

8

13

2

0

4

0

11

6

0

19

0

0

0

1

.203

.271

.422

Career

G

AB

R

H

2B

3B

HR

GRSL

RBI

BB

IBB

SO

SH

SF

HBP

GIDP

AVG

OBP

SLG

3 Years

171

363

49

88

13

1

14

0

50

30

0

97

2

3

1

7

.242

.300

.399

In 1956, Hadley married Mary Catherine Banyard, a high-school classmate and the sister of Mickey Banyard, a high-school baseball teammate and close friend of Hadley’s. Settling in Pocatello, Kent and Mary had two children, Lynn, born in 1957, and Kirk, born in 1960.

In one of the most famous trades in baseball history on December 11, 1959, the Kansas City Athletics sent Joe DeMaestri, Kent Hadley, and Roger Maris to the New York Yankees for Hank Bauer, Don Larsen, Norm Siebern, and Marv Throneberry. For Hadley, the trade effectively ended his major-league career.

As the years went on he spent much of his time with his four grandsons. An avid outdoorsman, he organized hikes and expeditions into wilderness areas around Southern Idaho for the young boys, enjoying their company immensely. While his grandchildren were a joy, for reasons only the parties involved knew, he and Mary were divorced in the late 1990s. Hadley, on his own save for his dog, Mitzie, cut back on his involvement in business endeavors. His father, Glenn, who had served as his mentor all Hadley’s life, died in 2003. Almost simultaneously, Hadley’s health began to fail. After a series of setbacks, he died of a liver ailment on March 10, 2005.

John Herbst

My first encounter with the great Notre Dame High (Van Nuys, CA) lefthander was in the Hearst Game in the summer of 1963.  I’d heard of him, who hadn’t.  His ability on the mound made him the most sought after high school pitcher in the country.  He had a scholarship to USC and turned down a huge offer from the Dodgers.  That day I witnessed the best pitcher I had ever faced.

As luck would have it John and I were teammates on the 1964 USC freshman team that was coached by the “Kid” (as his Trojan teammates called him) Buddy Pritchard.  Herbst was playing freshman basketball and didn’t show up till about 3 days before we were to play UCLA.  We met, he looked

at my 5’5″ 140 pound body and bellowed, “Where’s the rest of ya”, and laughed as only John Herbst could.  From that day on I became a teammate, a friend and a fan of the great “Herby”.

As a human being he was bigger than life.  His 6’4″ height was matched by his huge personality. He was college baseball’s Don Rickles.  When you were within his sights he’d find a way to lovingly embarrass the hell out of you.  When he and his best friend Billy Brown (a high school and Trojan teammate) got together, you laughed so hard that you thought your jaw would fall off.  He kept you loose in anticipation of the next Herby-ism directed your way.

His ability on the mound was magic.  He had every pitch and he knew where it was going every time. That freshman year he beat the finest UCLA freshman team in years, throwing only 90 pitches.  I can’t tell you what the opposition felt, but from my view in center field he was mostly…unhittable.  He was this great athlete that found a home on the mound.  He was truly the king on his castle.  But as dominant as he was, he wasn’t invincible.  An arm injury in his junior year took its toll.  He no longer had the great fastball.  He lost his pitching immortality.  You couldn’t relax on defense anymore.

While he battled to regain his pitching dominance, the Phillies signed him and promoted him to Triple A.  But his dream to pitch in the “show” never came.  All his young life he was the best.A can’t miss major leaguer with a Hall of Fame arm.  It must have been a huge blow to finally call it quits.

While his skills diminished, his wit never did.  He remains for me the life of every party memory. His life however, wasn’t always a party.  On October 8, 2005 he died of a heart attack at age 60. For me and his legion of friends, he was a breath of fresh air, with a competitive spirit that you had to admire.  I can still see him today leaning forward, arms dangling, just seconds before throwing another pitch…that no one playing baseball could hit.  Submitted by teammate Shelly Andrens

Wally Hood … Born: September 24, 1925 in Los Angeles, CA;  Passed away June 16, 2001

Lettered ’47 & ’48; USC Baseball Hall of Fame

High School: Fairfax (Los Angeles, CA); College:  USC

Signed by the New York Yankees as an amateur free agent in 1948. Debut: September 23, 1949

Team: Yankees 1949

Wally Hood was the first USC pitcher to earn All-American first team acclaim. He was honored in 1948 when he played on Troy’s first College World Series championship team. The 2-year (1947-48) letterman also was a 2-time All-Conference first teamer. He went on to play with the New York Yankees in 1949.

Ed Hookstratten

Ed Hookstratten at 83 died January 22, 2014.  He was a former Trojan baseball player in the USC Hall of Fame that pitched for Rod Dedeaux and remained a Trojan booster throughout his life.

Hookstratten, a lawyer and agent whose powerful roster of clients was a force with in the worlds of sports, entertainment and journalism, died of complications related to congestive heart failure.  He was known as a kingmaker and included a client list of Elvis Presley, Johnny Carson, Tom Brokaw, Marcus Allen, Pat Riley and Vin Scully. He was the general counsel for the Los Angeles Rams and he represented many top head coaches, including George Allen.

 Nicknamed “The Hook,” Hookstratten had a reputation for being a ferocious negotiator.  Tom Brokaw said when he retained Hookstratten to handle his contract negotiations, the reaction from NBC was extreme.  One executive literally clutched his chest and said, ‘You hired The Hook? Oh, my God”.  USC Marcus Allen, Hall of Famer recalled, “he was more than an agent, he was really more of a second dad to me”.                                    

Ed Isherwood

Gordon Jones Jr.

USC Trojan baseball player 1947 and 1948, a former director and senior executive of Hearst Corp., died at the age of 85.

Jones, who retired from Hearst Corp. in 1995 and was instrumental in building the company’s book and business publishing businesses.  He was a vice president of Hearst Corp. and group head of Hearst Books/Business Publishing. After his retirement, Jones served as a consultant to Hearst Corp.

Prior to Hearst, Jones was president of McGraw-Hill Publications Co. During his more than 26 years with McGraw-Hill, he served in numerous positions, including publisher, general manager, new products, for BusinessWeek; and senior vice president-marketing of McGraw-Hill Publications.

From 1948 to 1950, Jones played professional baseball for the Cleveland Indians. During his stint with the organization, he hit .257 playing outfield, third base and first base in the minor leagues for the Wilkes-Barre Indians, Spartanburg Peaches, Tacoma Tigers, Dayton Indians and Bakersfield Indians.  A native of Los Angeles, he received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Southern California. He is survived by his wife, the former Marilyn Holter, and their five children and 14 grandchildren.

Bruce Konopka  Trojan  Hall of Fame player was regarded as USC’s earliest outstanding first baseman. The 3-year (1940-42) letterman twice earned All-Conference first team honors (in 1941 and 1942). He then went on to play with the Philadelphia Phillies in the majors for 3 seasons (1942-43-46), with World War II interrupting his tenure. Died at age of 87 in 1996

Al LaMont

Robert W Levingston,
USC Trojan Robert Levingston,73, born on March 22, 1940, Hilly, Louisiana, passed away March 4, 2014. He resided in Diamond Bar, California at the time of his passing. Bob a great two sport athlete lettered ’60 & ’62 as an outfielder hitting .382 in 1962.
From teammate Tony Glassman: “I am sad to report that a great pal and a USC two sport athlete, Bob Levingston, has passed away. Bob was a starting outfielder for Rod in 1960 and 1962 and also a starting halfback on the USC football teams of that era. Bob was also the 1957 Los angeles All City football Player of the year. Bob was also a member of a great USC 1958 freshman baseball team that included Len Gabrielson, Ron Stillwell and Jim Withers.  I was fortunate to have played football and baseball with Bob at both LA High and USC.  Bob was a special and wonderful friend and athlete”.
Mickey McNamee
Michael “Mickey” McNamee, USC center fielder for the 1961 National Champions passed away January 2, 2014 at the age of 74 of cancer. McNamee had been in failing health for several months, as he bravely battlng cancer for the last five years.
Mickey was an icon of San Marino education and athletics.  Coaching for San Marino, 1964-2007 he held the San Gabriel Vally record for most career wins at 607.  His SMHS baseball teams won 5 CIF championships and Mickey.  His 607 wins as a high school baseball coach puts him in the top 20 all time in California.  Mickey also coached football, served as AD and was a teacher at San Marino.
Mickey still shares the single game total bases record at USC (15 bases).  He was also inducted into his Burroughs High Hall of fame.
Mickey is survived by Lynn, his wife and their daughter, caryn.
Memorial service will be held on Saturday, January 11 at 2PM.  San Marino Congregational Church. A reception at the church will follow the service.   Address: 2560 Huntington Dr, San Marino, CA 91108
Dick Minasian

Frank O’Neill Trainer

Died 9-21-10 of congestive heart failure at his home in Los Angeles at the age of 81.  He studied to become an athletic trainer at the University of Florida. He earned his certificate as a physical therapist in the Navy.  Frank was the USC trainer for the ’58 CWS champs and for the ’59 Trojan baseball team recognized as the best team Rod Dedeaux ever coached.  Frank took over as trainer of the Lakers when they moved from Minneapolis to Los Angeles in 1960 and worked for them until 1974.

Jack Palmer

Died July 2014 Short Stop on 1942 & 43 teams

Ken Petters

The oldest living Trojan baseball player passed away November 25, 2013 at the age of 98.  In 2010 at our annual banquet our Baseball Alumni Association honored Ken with its highly prestigious LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD.  Ken was the captain of the 1936 championship baseball team playing 2nd base and was a teammate of Rod Dedeaux on the ’34 and ’35 teams. He was drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals and played professionally until 1938.  He served in the US Navy during World War II from 1942-1945

Ken obtained a Business Administration degree from USC in 1936 as well as earning a MS in School Administration from USC.  As an educator Ken was the Principal of Montebello High School and Beverly Hills School.  He served as Superintendent of Beverly Hills School District from 1959 until his retirement in 1982. He was appointed to the California State Board of Education serving in various capacities until 1992. He was also an adjunct professor guest lecturer at Harvard and StanfordUniversity. He was honored by local Beverly Hills civic organizations for his service in public education including Man of the Year by the Beverly Hills Chamber of Commerce and Civic Association and Citizen of the Year by both the MapleCenter and Beverly Hills Realty Board.

Ken received many honors for his accomplishments at USC and in public education.  He received the USC Rossier Alumni Lifetime Achievement Award for contributions to public education. One of the little known facts about Ken is that while at USC he was in many films including “Mutiny on the Bounty” and “Death on the Diamond”.   Ken loved USC and made sure that his sons (Kent and Craig) were properly indoctrinated by taking them to USC football and baseball games by the time they could speak and ever since. 

Jeff Port

One of our great Trojan baseball players passed away Sunday, March 3.  Jeff Port, 62, died of complications from cancer.

Jeff played for Rod in 1970, ’71 & ’72 and was instrumental in the Trojans consecutive streak of national titles.  Jeff played on three national championship teams, was all conference in 1971 and batted .324 in 1970.

His older brother Randy, my teammate, was on the 1968 National Championship team.

Submitted by Jay Jaffe

Gary Robin

Bill Seinsoth

Tragically died September 7, 1969 at the age of 22.  Bill was an All American first baseman who won the 1968 CWS Most Outstanding Player.

He was one of the finest prospects to come out of California.  Bill was drafted five times, but he played only one year professionally, never reaching the majors. He died in a motor vehicle accident while on the way to watch the professional football game.  Drafted by the Dodgers, Houston Astros, Baltimore Orioles and Washington Senators.

One of the letters received for his funeral was from California Governor Ronald Reagan, who wrote “One thing you know more than anyone is how much better the world is because of your son passed our way. You have every reason to be proud of him.” Rod Dedeaux said, “If Bill Seinsoth had lived, there’s a good chance that no one would have ever heard of Steve Garvey.”

Sid Semon

Died July 14, 2014 Catcher on 1956 & 57 teams

Bill Sharman

John Stevenson Born approximately in 1933 and passed away in 1983. I knew john since we were kids. We played baseball against each other in different playgrounds in the LA area. Again in high school.  He went to Washington and I went to Dorsey High. Our sons played at Chatsworth High School in 1983 when they won the LA City Championship. John was a pilot with American Airlines. He passed away from cancer. Len Landy   

HAL URNER…. passed away in March of 1992…not confirmed

Lettered ’41, ’42 & ’43

USC Baseball Hall of Fame

One of USC’s finest outfielders in the 1940s. The 3-year (1941-43) letterman centerfielder earned All-Conference second team laurels in both 1941 and 1943. He helped the Trojans to a pair of conference titles (1942 and 1943).

Bob Zuber

Was a member of USC’s first national championship team in 1948 as a catcher. During the championship game against Yale (against first baseman and future President George H. Bush), he made the first out of a game-ending triple play that clinched the title for the Trojans. He led the Trojans in 1948 with a .407 batting average and was a three-time All-CIBA and Pacific Coast Conference selection (1948-50).

Born in Stockton, Calif., on Nov. 3, 1928, Zuber attended Washington High in Los Angeles and was a member of the 1944 city championship team. In 1946 as a high school All-American, he was chosen to play in the Hearst All-American Baseball Game at the Polo Grounds in New York City.

He earned his bachelor’s degree from USC in 1950 and later earned his master’s degree in 1952. He was a member of the Sigma Chi fraternity while at USC.

He signed with the Chicago Cubs and played for the Los Angeles Angels of the Pacific Coast League. He also played for Des Moines (Western League) and Visalia (California State League). After his playing career, he became a coach at Birmingham High in Van Nuys, Calif. from 1956 through 1964. Birmingham High won the league championship four straight years (1961-64) while winning the city championship in 1964.

He served as assistant coach at Pierce College in Woodland Hills (1965-66) before becoming head coach at Los Angeles City College (1967-73). Zuber registered a 198-60-1 overall record at L.A. City College and led the school to numerous conference championships. L.A. City College won the Western State Conference championship in 1968 and 1969 and the Southern California Conference championship in 1970, 1971 and 1973. The 1971 squad won the Southern California Junior College championship and finished as the state runner-up.

In 1974, he became assistant coach at Pepperdine as the Waves won the West Coast Conference championship.

He came back to USC to serve as assistant coach under Rod Dedeaux in 1975 and 1976. The 1975 squad went 42-14-1 and won the Pac-8 championship.

“Bob was a great Trojan and friend of our family,” said Justin Dedeaux, who was an assistant coach with Zuber during his two-year tenure. “He was dear friends with Rod and my father always considered him one of his all-time greatest catchers. He had a wonderful baseball mind. We will really miss him.”

He is survived by his wife of 57 years, Tollis (also a USC graduate); sons Bob (Patty), Rick (Christine) and Ron (Cathy) and seven grandchildren.