It was a who’s who of city sports legends when the DC Sports Athletic Association (DCSAA) inducted 11 giants during the third annual High School Hall of Fame ceremony at the Office of Cable Television, Film, Music and Entertainment.
Inductees at the June 6 event included former athletes, coaches, administrators and officials who made significant contributions to athletics and the D.C. community.
“It is an honor to share this stage with these men and women tonight and acknowledge all that they have done and continue to do for athletics, especially in the District of Columbia,” said Clark Ray, executive director of the DCSAA.
The inductees included:
* Esther Stroy-Harper, a former standout track performer at Spingarn and National Cathedral, who was the youngest member of the U.S. Olympic team in the Summer Games in 1968 as a 15-year old. Stroy-Harper would later capture a gold medal and a bronze in the 1971 Pan American games.
* Lawrence “Larry” Hill, who officiated high school football, basketball, baseball and softball before moving on to the college level and eventually to the professional level. Hill was the first African American to serve as replay official for the Super Bowl 38
* James “Beanie” Howell, who was an All-Met basketball player and all-league football player at Archbishop Carroll High School. Howell went on become one of the top officials in NCAA college basketball and ultimately became the first African American to referee an NCAA men’s basketball championship in 1973.
* Otto Jordan, who was a standout football, basketball and track and field at Dunbar High School. Jordan went on to become an all-CIAA selection in football at Howard University before going to coach, teach and serve as an assistant principal and ultimately become DCPS Supervising Director of Athletics.
* Dick Myers, former coach at Gonzaga College High School for 34 years, capturing four Catholic League championships and a City Title and recording an impressive 714-362 career record. Sixty-one of Myers’ former players ended up as team captions of their college teams.
* Lonnie Perrin, a standout football and basketball player at McKinley Tech who went on to the University of Illinois where he received All Big 10 Conference honors as a running back. Perrin then went on to play in the Super Bowl as a member of the Denver Broncos. He also had stints with the Chicago Bears and the Washington Redskins before retiring to work for the Department of Parks and Recreation.
* Willie Stewart, former standout in football at Dunbar High School and later at Elizabeth City State College. Stewart began his legendary coaching career at Eastern and later at Anacostia, compiling an impressive 214-142 career record, winning seven Turkey Bowl titles and sending numerous young student athletes to colleges and universities.
* Marie Williams, a former standout at Holy Child where she led her team to three Independent School League titles. After graduating from the University of Maryland, Williams took over the St. John’s College High School and built a dynasty, guiding them to four WCAC titles in five years and three City titles.
* Maury Wills, a former standout basketball, football and baseball player at Cardozo High School. Wills then went on to have a brilliant career in Major League Baseball, leading the Los Angeles Dodgers to three World Series titles, garnering seven All-Star selections, two Golden Glove awards and a NL MVP in 1962. Wills is one of the all-time leading base stealers in major league history.
* Willie Wood, a former football standout at Armstrong High School who went on to become the first African American quarterback in the PAC-10 Conference while at the University of Southern California. Wood then went on to sign as a free agent for the Green Bay Packers as a safety and played in eight Pro Bowls and five NFL titles in six seasons. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1989.
* John Tatum Sr., a former all-around athlete as a member of the basketball, baseball and swim teams at Armstrong High School. It is in the pool where Tatum excelled and instructed numerous young people in the sport.
Tatum became a member of the Water Wizards swim team and most recently won three gold medals in the DC Senior Games.
“I tell people all the time that swimming is the one sport where you work all the muscles and bones in your body,” said Tatum, who still swims at the ripe age of 100. “No matter what sport you participate in, swimming can always be helpful.”