MEDFORD, NJ) - SHAWNEE HIGH SCHOOL: Serving the Communities of Medford, Medford Lakes
Shawnee High School would like to announce the Athletic Hall of Fame Inductees for 2007. The induction will be held on Friday, October 5th in the media center of Shawnee High School. Reception and Induction at 5pm in the Media Center. Presentation to the community will take place at the football stadium at 7pm. The Shawnee hall of fame inductees and their biographies follow:
Athletes :PATTY ALLEN COATE Class of 1978LORI BRUNEY-JOHNSTON Class of 1984MICHELLE DI MURO AVÉ Class of 1985DEANNA GERMANO SCHARF Class of 1986KIM THORNE O’BRIEN Class of 1976RANDY E. WORRELL Class of 1985Coaches :MICHAEL YURCHO Retired Girls Cross Country and Boys and Girls Track CoachContributors :
Retired Teacher, Coach, Counselor, Assistant Principal,
and Athletic DirectorJOHN L. FOX
DEANNA GERMANO SCHARF
Class of 1986
Deanna Germano Scharf, a member of the Shawnee Girls’ Cross Country, Winter Track, and Spring Track teams from 1982-1986, specialized in distance running, as well as the 1600 and 3200 meters.
She won four New Jersey Group 4 State Championship Titles in Cross Country (1985), the Indoor 1600 meters (1986), the Indoor 3200 meters (1986), and the Outdoor 3200 meters in 1986. With a seemingly effortless determination on the track, Deanna went on to garner the 1985 South Jersey Runner of the Year Award by the S.J. Track Coaches Association, the 1985 Winner of the Group 4 Shore Invitational Cross Country Meet-Division A, the 1983, 1984, and 1985 All South Jersey Award in Cross Country, and 1984, 1985, and 1986 All South Jersey Award in Track. Deanna earned 12 Varsity letters while at Shawnee. She still holds the record in the Two Mile.
Deanna then moved on to the University of Rhode Island where she won the All New England Cross Country Award in 1987, All New England Indoor Track Award, and All New England Outdoor Track Awards from 1986-1990, while majoring in Speech Communication. She earned her Varsity letters in Cross Country, Indoor Track, and Outdoor Track at Rhode Island, and was on the Dean’s List from 1986-1990.
Deanna is currently employed as a Medical Records Specialist at the Riverbend Family Medical Center in Fuquay-Varina, North Carolina. She is married to John Scharf and has three daughters, Alyssa, Natalie, and Jillian, all accomplished athletes. She spends her spare time actively involved in her daughters’ volleyball and soccer games, and track and field meets.
JOHN L. FOX
Ultimate Fan and Contributor
Mr. John Fox, simply known as “Jack” by the Shawnee faculty, staff, administration, students, and athletes, hasn’t missed an important Renegade athletic competition in decades. A true “Sports Nut,” Jack usually arrives 15 minutes before starting time, holds court with friends, coaches, and admirers, and then quickly takes his place in the stands, always the best seat in the house. It wouldn’t be a contest if Jack were not there, rooting on the home team. You can tell by the expression of excitement on his face that he can’t imagine being anywhere else.
Mr. Fox graduated from North Catholic High School (now known as Northeast Catholic) in Philadelphia in 1942, and lettered in three sports. He has been married to his lovely wife, Margaret, for 62 years. She was “wind beneath his wings” for all those years, the “unsung hero” of the family. “Whatever time any of us came home from school, work, practice, or a game, Mom was always there with a meal on the table. I remember the washer and dryer running well into the night,” recalls daughter Margaret Nugent. “Mom still made time to volunteer, run her own direct mail and sewing business, and work as a court reporter in Medford Lakes”.
A retired European Customer Service Manager at Rohm & Haas, Jack and Marge had seven children, three who attended Lenape High School (Jim, Joe, Maureen Nugent, and Robert) and four at Shawnee (Thomas, Shawn, and Patricia Crawford). They have 21 grandchildren and 7 great-grandchildren, four of whom attended Shawnee. He started the first Shawnee Athletic Booster Club with Bob Meyer, Sr. as President and himself as Vice-President under the guidance of Shawnee’s first principal, Gordon Galtere, and Athletic Director Tom Tofaute.
During World War II, Mr. Fox served as a Staff Sergeant and Gunner on a B-17. He flew 20 missions before being shot down behind enemy lines and held as a Prisoner of War in Germany for 11 months. He chairs the Lenape District’s Veterans Group, an outstanding band of brothers who were instrumental in installing monuments at each of our district high schools honoring the sacrifices made by our war veterans. Jack and his group of war veterans come to our high school history classes on Veteran’s Day and throughout the school year to relay first hand accounts of their war experiences on the battlefields, on the sea, in the air, and in prisoner of war camps. Shawnee history teacher Michael Panarella reports a quote that summarizes Jack well: “ When you go home, tell them of us and say ‘For your tomorrow, we gave our today’.”
Everyone at Shawnee and our surrounding communities would like to thank Jack for his undying dedication, loyalty, and generosity to the Lenape District. He is an outstanding citizen who deserves our special recognition.
KIM THORNE O’BRIEN
Class of 1976
Kim Thorne O’Brien was one of the first female athletes to win 10 Varsity letters during the early years of Shawnee history. She became the mainstay of the field hockey team, playing halfback under the legendary coach Bobbie Schultz, point guard in girls’ basketball, and left field in softball. She earned All South Jersey First Team in Field Hockey and Softball, Defensive Player of the Year in 1976, and was elected captain of all three sports during her senior year. She was chosen Class Athlete in 1976 and ranked 3rd in her graduating class.
At Ursinus College, Kim chose a Health and Physical Education major with a minor in Biology, while earning 9 Varsity letters in field hockey, basketball, and softball. She captained all three sports and appeared in two AIAW Division I Championship Finals in field hockey and two MAC Women’s basketball finals. She was chosen as College Player of the Year in 1980 and a Distinguished Player in the Field Hockey Club of South Jersey.
She went on to coach field hockey, lacrosse, and basketball at The College of New Jersey and Rider University. Her team won the NCAA Division III National Championship in 1981. She played for Philly 1 Club Hockey (‘80-’81) and won the National Club Championship in 1981. Kim is in the TCNJ Hall of Fame as a member of the most Distinguished Team. They won the first NCAA National Championship.
Kim continued her graduate studies at Temple University, earning a graduate assistantship in Exercise Physiology and a University Fellowship Ph.D. in Cardiovascular Physiology. Kim then went to work for Pfizer, Inc., KabiVitrum as a Regional Hematology Specialist, Genentech, Inc., and MedImmune, Inc., winning numerous awards in regional sales and marketing achievements. She is currently a consultant with a biotechnology company called Independence, Incorporated. She has served on the Ursinus College Board of Trustees from 2003 until the present.
Kim still resides in Medford with her husband Richard and her dogs, Nikki and Dash.
Class of 1984
As one of our most outstanding Shawnee athletes of the early 1980’s, Lori Bruney-Johnston earned 10 Varsity letters in field hockey, basketball, and softball.
While attending Shawnee High School, she was South Jersey Defensive Player of the Year and Newark Star-Ledger All-State in Field Hockey, All Burlington County in Girls Basketball, and All Burlington County and Newark Star-Ledger All State in Softball.
After graduation from Shawnee, Lori went on to major in English and journalism at University of North Carolina- Chapel Hill and lead her college team in field hockey, garnering the distinctions of two-time All America, two-time Honda Broderick Award nominee, and three-time All ACC. At UNC, she earned four varsity letters.
Her skill, talent, and dedication to field hockey did not end at Chapel Hill. Lori was a member of the United States National Field Hockey team from 1989-1991. It was an honor for Lori to be selected for the ACC 50th Anniversary Team as one of the top field hockey players in ACC history.
Lori lives in Wheaton, IL with husband Victor and children Erick and Katie. She works at ESI International as a Senior Business Development Manager. Lori is still involved with the United States Field Hockey Association as Head Coach of the Futures Program in Chicago, Illinois.
MICHELLE DI MURO AVÉ
Class of 1985
When Michelle DiMuro (Avé) entered the hallways of Shawnee High School as a freshman, little did she know that she would changed the face of Girls Cross Country and Track and Field at Shawnee, and in South Jersey, as well.
Michelle was a member of Shawnee’s Cross Country and Spring Track teams from 1981 to 1985, amassing numerous titles in 800
meters, 1000 meters, and various relay and cross country races. She was ranked #3 in the U.S. High School 1000 meters and indoor 1000 yd. by Track and Field News (1984), the 4th All Time Fastest U.S. High School Girls Indoor 1000 meters (1985), 2nd place in cross country, New Jersey State Champion in 800 meters, New Jersey Track and Field All Century Indoor team 1000 meters, named All South Jersey and all Burlington County in track for four years, and won the AAU National Sprint Medley(1984) and the East Coast Invitational 800 meters, just to name a few. She was inducted into the South Jersey Track and Field Hall of Fame in 2005.
While earning her BS in Business/Commerce and Finance at Villanova (’89), Michelle continued her outstanding performances as an eight time All American in Track and Field, NCAA Division I Indoor 4x800m Championships (’87, ’88, ’89) and Indoor 800m top three finalists (’88,’89), Big East 800m record holder (’89), 1988 Olympic Trials 800m Qualifier, and Big East Track and Field Athlete of the Decade candidate. She was inducted into the Villanova Athletic Hall of Fame in 2003.
Michelle obtained her MBA from the University of Montana(’95) and managed to maintain her professional career by ranking 24th in the Outdoor 800m worldwide. She was a Finalist in the 1996 Olympic 800 m trials, a Semi-finalist in the U.S. World Championships (’99), and a Sponsored Athlete for Reebok, Nike, and Asics. Her love of track and field has taken her around the world.
Michelle lives in Mansfield, Massachusetts with her husband, Steve.
She is currently the Senior Product Line Manager/Running Apparel for Reebok International.
She credits her high school coach, Mike Yurcho, for the beginnings of her success. “Coach Yurcho taught me, at a very young age, to challenge myself, believe in myself, and value hard work. This is when you begin to define who you are, your work ethic, where you want to go in life, and most of all, your sense of confidence.”
Retired Girls Cross Country and Boys and Girls Track Coach
Michael Yurcho began his stellar teaching and coaching career at Shawnee High School in 1969, only to be drafted into the U.S. Army a short time later. While serving two years at Fort Gordon, GA and in Inchon, Korea, it must have been impossible for him to imagine all the fine Shawnee students and athletes he would impact after his return home from duty.
Mike graduated from Trenton Central High School, where he captained the varsity football team and was a school record holder in the low and high hurdles. At Trenton State College (now The College of New Jersey), he was a four-year varsity letterman and tri-captain his senior year. He also played soccer for the Polish-American Club in Trenton. Mike graduated from Trenton State in 1969 with a BS in Industrial Arts and Technology and an MA in Administration and Supervision from Glassboro State College (now Rowan University) in 1975.
A “jack of all trades,” Mike coached football, soccer, and swimming before making his mark in Cross Country and Track and Field. Mike started the Girls Track and Field program in 1978 and stayed with it until 1987. He amassed a 106-8 record and had a 44 straight dual meet win streak, with three Woodbury Relay Championships (’85, ’86, ’87), three George Rowland Relay Championships (’85, ’86, ’87), and a Sectional Championship.
Mike also started the Girls Cross Country program in 1985 and finished with a 136-2 dual meet record. His teams won 10 Burlington County League Championships (’85-’95) and one Olympic Conference Championship in 1996 (Shawnee’s first year in the conference) with four more to follow. Also, his teams won 14 Burlington County Opens, 13 S.J. Opens and 12 straight S.J. Sectional Championships, as well as five Group 4 NJ State Championships and three Meet of Championships. In 1985, his Winter Track team won two high jump NJ State Championships, and a distance medley and hurdle championship. They also set the State Winter Track record in the sprint medley.
Mike has been awarded numerous commendations including S.J. Coach of the Year five times, Girls Cross Country Coach of the Century (by Courier-Post), and Burlington County Coach of the Year many times. He was inducted into the NJSCA Hall of Fame in 1997. In 2003, Mike also coached a National Champ and National record holder in the pole vault, Danielle O’Reilly.
Mike retired in 2004 after teaching and coaching for 35 years. He and his wife of 38 years, Pat, have two children, Suzanne Saulsbury and Michael.
Mike has served as President of the Lake Pine Colony Club and volunteer coach for MYAA. He is active in the Medford United Methodist Church, Forney’s Battalion USMC (a Civil War era marksman team), and the National Muzzle Loading Association and West Jersey Long Hunters Association (a pre-Revolutionary War re-enactment group). He spends his time playing golf, fishing, going to yard sales, and riding his motorcycle. He and Pat are anxiously awaiting the birth of his first grandchild.
PATTY ALLEN COATE
Class of 1978
A triple threat in Shawnee athletics, Patty played varsity tennis and lacrosse for four years and basketball for two years. She captained all three teams during her senior year. In 1978, she won the 2nd Singles County Tournament, as well as the Burlington County Lacrosse Division honors. Patty earned ten varsity letters during her years at Shawnee.
She continued all three sports at Loyola College of Maryland, winning the league singles tournament in 1978. In lacrosse Patty was All-American (1982), nominated for the Broderick Award (1981), named to the AIAW Championship Divison II team (1982), Lacrosse MVP in 1981 and 1982, and received the Ernest Lagna Trophy (female student-athlete) and ROTC awards. She graduated with a BS in Economics and Computer Science, and then completed her MBA in Finance in 1985. She was inducted into the Loyola College Hall of Fame in 1987.
Patty also played the defensive wing position on the United States Lacrosse squad from 1981-1987, including the World Cup Team (1982) and the Touring Team to England (1984). She continued to play club lacrosse in the Baltimore/Washington area. Her teams won several National Club Championships and she was named to the All Tournament Championship Team on two occasions. She also had the opportunity to play on a tour to Japan in 1992. In Maryland, she helped to start the high school and summer lacrosse leagues, and has coached kindergarten soccer and 5th-6th-grade basketball.
Patty currently resides in Allegany, New York with her husband, Joe, and three children, Patrick (22), Peter (19), and Melissa (15). She is employed in the business consulting field and works for Quinetix, LLC as a Manager of Analytics and Modeling.
Retired Teacher, Coach, Counselor, Assistant Principal,
and Athletic Director
Rick attended Steinert High School in Hamilton, NJ and graduated in 1963. He then earned his BS in Business Education (1970) from Rider College (now Rider University). He went on to obtain two Masters Degrees in Business Education and Student Personnel Service, and earned additional graduate credits for his Educational Administration certification from Trenton State College (now The College of New Jersey).
Rick began his 30-year career at Shawnee High School in 1970 as a teacher in our Business Department. After two years, he joined the Guidance Department as a counselor, helping Shawnee students with course selection and college planning. He coached Freshman Baseball (1970-1973) and Girls Spring Track (1989-1990). Rick then rose to Director of Guidance in 1974, and Assistant Principal /Athletic Director in 1991.
He was awarded the honor of Olympic Conference Athletic Director of the Year 1999-2000 and inducted into the South Jersey Coaches Hall of Fame in 2001. He is a veteran of the U.S. Navy from 1963-1967.
Rick retired in 2000 and now lives in Manahawkin, NJ with Jill, his wife of 36 years. Jill retired from our Mathematics Department at Shawnee. Rick and Jill’s daughters, Stephanie and Gretchen, are both Shawnee graduates. In particular, Rick enjoys caring for his grandkids, Ryan, Luke, Rachel, and Jonah. He has followed his dream and love of culinary arts by starting his own Personal Chef Service called DAD CAN COOK. He has been the President of the South Jersey Chapter of Personal Chefs since 2003, and was recently selected as the Personal Chef of the Year by the 2200 members of the United States Personal Chef Association.
RANDY E. WORRELL
Class of 1985
Randy Worrell was one of our most outstanding athletes at Shawnee High School in the mid-1980’s. He earned three varsity letters on our football team as a running back and nose guard under Coaches Dave Spinella and Tim Gushue, and three varsity letters on the wrestling team under Coach Roger Pullen.
Competing at 158 in 10th and 11th grade and 170 in 12th grade, Randy accumulated a number of wrestling firsts at Shawnee by winning District Champion in 1983, 1984, and 1985 and Regional Champion in 1983, 1984, and 1985. He was a State Qualifier those same years and placed second in the State of New Jersey in 1984. He was also President of the Junior Class at Shawnee in 1984.
After graduation from Shawnee, Randy attended Delaware Valley College and majored in Business, earning his B.S. in 1990. He wrestled for Delaware Valley, becoming the Middle Atlantic Conference Champion in 1988 and 1989, and National Champion in 1989.
He currently resides with his wife Amy and four children, Brock, Bailey, Colton, and Mason in Berlin, NJ. He is a Construction Manager for D’Amico Construction Services in Southampton, NJ and is still directly involved with wrestling by donating his time as Youth Wrestling Coach in Winslow Township.
Randy would like to thank his parents and his coaches at Shawnee, especially Mr. Spinella, Mr. Gushue, and Mr.Parone (football) and Mr. Pullen. Mr. Burtis, and Mr. Panarella (wrestling).