OSWEGO, NY – An exciting and emotional evening was spent by nearly 100 Oswego High School former athletes and coaches along with family, friends and Buc sports fans as the “Class of 2012” was inducted in the Buccaneer Booster-Oswego High School Athletic Hall of Fame.
Howard “Howie” McCann and his wife Sherry (Brown) McCann were joined by former Buc four letter athlete Deborah (Miller) Lyons, 50 year coach Erwin “Jeep” Dewey, the family of the late Francis “Fran” Carl and members of the 1995-96 and 1996-97 state runner up New York State hockey team as they were all inducted into the elite hall of honor.
The evening started with the induction of Fran Carl who was a star in Oswego High School athletics in the late 1940s and was a standout in football and basketball. His daughter, Maureen, accepted in honor of her father and thanked the committee for the honor. She also expressed that her father not only enjoyed playing sports, but was a coach and mentor of many youngsters as he continued his love of sports after leaving the scholastic arena.
Sherry “Brown” McCann was presented for induction by Hall of Fame member Helen Jermyn. She was a stand out in basketball and track throughout the four years at OHS. She received numerous league and school honors.
Howard “Howie” McCann joined his wife Sherry as the first married couple to be inducted.
He was a four-year varsity baseball player and starred on the gridiron for three years. He also was the recipient of league and school honors during his time at OHS. He was introduced by Mike McCrobie who read a letter from former coach and Hall of Fame member Ted Kerley who cited the outstanding leadership traits of McCann. After high school he played baseball at Gulf Coast Community College and at Mississippi State. He had also been drafted by the Minnesota Twins. Currently, he is the owner of McCann’s Windward Baseball Academy.
Howie said, “I would just like to thank everybody this is quite and honor for me and my wife.”
Debbie (Miller) Lyons was also inducted into the Hall of fame and was another recipient of the OHS Outstanding Female Athlete Award. She had earned over a dozen varsity letters in her four years and excelled in softball, volleyball, basketball and soccer.
Debbie noted, “This is a wonderful honor. Playing Oswego sports was awesome. I’ll always be a Buccaneer.”
Veteran coach Erwin “Jeep” Dewey has been at the helm of the track team for a half century. His dedication to football (33 years total) and track as well as to the student athletes has been monumental. He not only was a three-sport athlete in school, but after college returned to Oswego as a physical education teacher. He never left Oswego and has been an integral part of the program for more than five decades.
He was brought to the podium for his induction after his son, Kevin, expressed the love and dedication his father continues to display to athletes and family.
“Jeep” thanked the late Joe Wilber for his support and noted, “It really is an awesome experience for me.”
The 1995-96 and 1996-97 state runner up varsity hockey teams were inducted together.
The two hockey teams consist of many players who contributed both years in the seasons which concluded as state runners up in the New York State Public High School Association Division I Championship Tournament.
In 1995-96 the team finished 21-3 and the following year was 21-7-1.
Members of both teams were Mark Donabella, Matt Vashaw, Mike Tucker, Mike Foley, Steve Cook, Phil Carroll, Chris Rinaldo, Ben Perlman, Chris Ackley, Greg Parr, Mark DeSantis, Travis Doty, Nate Elliott, and Kevin Jung.
On the 1995-96 squad were Matt Von Esch, Brendan Coliver, Ben Miller, Pat DeBan, Josh Crannell, Erik Cole and Jeremy Knopp.
While the 1996-97 team also included T.J. Barnes, Dan Farley, Chris Mathes, Derek Carr, Lou Iorizzo, Josh Molinari, Bob Haynes, Mike Fortier, Tris Gillen, Brian Gallagher.
Ben Miller accepted for the 95-96 team and Mike Foley for the 96-97 team.
Assistant Coach Mark Fierro expressed his thoughts about the two teams, as master of ceremony Bill Foley read the letter.
The players thanked their coaches, teammates and Buc Boosters.
However, Foley added, “I would like to also thank our parents as they trucked us all around the Northeast and the Oswego community for all of their support from the squirt ranks up through the varsity.”
Superintendent of Schools Bill Crist, Buccaneer Booster President Judy Queale-Dunsmoor and OHS Athletic Director Mike Conners expressed their appreciation to the newest inductees and congratulated everyone for the contributions that have been made to the Oswego athletic program as well as to family and community.
The Buc Booster Club sponsored Oswego High School Athletic Hall of Fame continues to grow with the addition of these outstanding athletes and coach.
Nominations are being accepted as the “Class of 2013” is expected to be inducted in the fall or early winter.