CARBON COUNTY SPORTS HALL OF FAME 2002
Carbon Sports Hall of Fame inducts 12th class
By JOE PLASKO
The Carbon County Area Chapter of the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame added 23 new members to its ranks during its 12th
Annual Induction Banquet held Sunday, May 26 at Jim Thorpe Memorial Hall.
A total of 302 people were in attendance for the Hall's yearly induction rites, said Rudy Bednar, who served as master of ceremonies.
Inducted with the Class of 2002 were the following:
From Coaldale, inductees were the late Donald "Dinty" Butts, a standout football lineman who later served as the borough's Chief of Police and as a councilman; Joe "Lopey" Lopez, a Coaldale High all-around performer who once received a minor league contract offer from the Brooklyn Dodgers; and Ed "Finky" Shubeck, a gridiron star for Coaldale High and at George Washington University.
Joe "Lopey" Lopez
A gifted athlete and a true gentleman are the traits which best characterize Coaldale High School's Joe "Lopey" Lopez. The 1949 graduate was one of the finest all-around performers to ever wear the Orange and Black.
In Lopey's final season, under Tom Raymer, the Tigers lost but one gridiron contest and started a winning streak which stretched over three seasons (22 straight games) before a setback in a 1950 contest. Joe played four seasons of varsity football, running out of the halfback slot in the old short punt formation; two varsity basketball seasons and played Legion baseball.
He captured Schuylkill County All Star honors in both football and basketball and received an athletic scholarship to attend Temple University in the City of Brotherly Love. A serious injury early in his sophomore year cut short a brilliant football career
Joe, however, was fortunate enough to be able to continue his baseball pursuits, lettering as a catcher with the Temple squad and receiving a contract offer from the old Brooklyn Dodgers to play in their Minor Leaue Farm System. However, following his 1953 graduation from Temple, he was drafted into the service during the Korean Conflict, negating his baseball plans. Granted security clearance, he served with the Military Police at White Sands, N.M., and in Germany. Upon discharge he worked for General Electric in Tampa, Fla., before returning to the Panther Valley area and marrying the former Valerie Konski of Coaldale in 1957. They are the parents of a daughter Jessica, wife of Bob Bunson of Philadelphia and proud grandparents of twins.
Joe, a self-employed Real Estate Appraiser, resides with his wife in Tamaqua.
Ed "Finky" Shubeck
"Tough as nails" best describes Edward "Finky" Shubeck, a four-year gridiron performer for the Tigers of Coaldale.
Finky enjoyed an outstanding career with the Tigers after being one of a few freshmen ever to dress for a Thanksgiving Day battle with archrival Lansford.
He was a sophomore fullback for the Tigers before being inserted into a tackle position for his junior year. He returned to his fullback slot in his senior year (1950) and scored four touchdowns against Lansford to capture the scoring title in the Carbon-Panther Valley area.
During his four-year career, the Tigers lost but five gridiron contests. Ed also ran track in his final year, played basketball in his junior and senior seasons, and played Legion baseball.
Prowess on the gridiron earned Finky a scholarship to George Washington University. He prepped two years at Potomac State, where he started at tackle for the gridders, but returned to the backfield for his final two years at GW, graduating in 1955 with a Degree in Business Administration. He was on hand for Coaldale football practices in the middle fifties and was used by Doc Raymer to whip the young Tiger hopefuls into shape, putting much vim and vigor into those duties.
Ed was born in Ashland, Pa., to the late Mary Shubeck but he was raised and educated in Coaldale, graduating in l951.
Following his collegiate career he became employed in the insurance industry, working in sales and investigations with the General Mills Sales, Inc., until his retirement in 1998.
Ed coached Lansford Little League and PV Knee-Hi football for 10 years. He served on the Panther Valley School Board from 1982-1988 and was appointed to the Lansford-Coaldale Water Authority for a two-year term. He is a lifelong member of the Lansford East End AA.
Finky resides in Lansford with his wife, the former Margaret Mary Wargo, R.N. They are the parents of four children, Michael J. of Coaldale, Michele A., wife of Carl Schaeffer Jr. of New Ringgold, Edward M. of Lansford and John T. of Summit Hill, and eight grandchildren. He has a brother Bob who lives in Nesquehoning.
Donald "Dinty" Butts
Donald "Dinty" Butts, a former Coaldale Police Chief, was an outstanding four-year lineman for the Orange and Black, graduating from the Tiger school in 1943. Under the tutelage of Tom Raymer, Dinty was a two-way grid performer, noted for his toughness in the trenches. He was also a weightman for the Tiger track squad.
Butts attended Seton Hall Preparatory School, where he captained the football squad. He received several awards for his outstanding defensive work as guard and tackle on the South Orange Prepsters team. He was also the team's placekicker, averaging 80 percent of his conversion attempts and booting the winning point in the final game as Seton Hall closed out an undefeated season.
Dinty was named to the All-Metropolitan Prep School Team of 1944, selected yearly by the New York World Telegram newspaper (also elected to the same team was a young quarterback from Brooklyn Prep named Joe Paterno). Now we know why Dinty was an avid Penn State booster. In addition, Butts was placed on the New Jersey all-prep first team.
While at Seton Hall, Dinty consistently placed first in the 12-pound shotput event.
He received scholarship offers from Penn State, St. Bonaventure and the University of Florida. He spent one year at Penn State where he played freshman ball for the Nittany Lions before leaving college to join the Navy.
Upon his discharge from the service he returned to the Panther Valley area and joined a group of ex-servicemen who formed a semi-proessional football team named the Tamaqua Indians. The Indians later joined the Anthracite Pro Football League, with which Dinty was affiliated until its demise in 1950.
In addition to football and track, Dinty was active on the local baseball scene and was president of the Coaldale baseball team when it won its first Panther Valley League crown.
Prior to his 13-year stint as Coaldale Police Chief, Dinty served as a councilman and held various other offices. Married to the late Helen Fedora Butts, Dinty passed away in 1995. He had a daughter, Melanie Christman, and two granddaughters.