LETTER: Dick Ward, finest all-around athlete

To the editor:

Recently Dick Ward passed away. Dick was a great athlete and a great friend. He was not a big man, but had wonderful balance and coordination to complement a strong competitive attitude.

I am writing this as his obituary was understated. He always down-played his athletic accomplishments, never self-promoting. I believe he was embarrassed by the adulation he received.

He was a quarterback in football, a top scorer in basketball and a real hitter in baseball, playing any position Coach Hyatt asked him to play. “Wardie” became a great fast-pitch softball pitcher and a powerful hitter. He carried a high average as a bowler and a very low handicap as a golfer.

Most of his records were destroyed when the school burned. Many years after the fire, Coach Hyatt gave me the 1950 championship book. Wardie averaged almost 17 points a game, even when sitting down when we had big leads. At that time he was one of the best basketball players in Central New York.

Dick was a nice guy and he and Martha raised a wonderful family. In my estimation, he was the finest all-around athlete to graduate from Skaneateles High School. I will miss him!

Jack Palmer

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