The Gray Border on the right is not part of the 20×24 Roster.
The 1953 Football Season
Prior to the Duke Game the Cheerleaders imposed a “Silence” upon the Corps of Cadets after the traditional sendoff of the team. When the Corps completed its subdued, strangely silent, pregame march-on at the Polo Grounds, and the last man double-timed onto the first step of the stands, the Corps of Cadets exploded out. They shook that old stadium almost non-stop in the sunshine and shadows of that Indian summer afternoon.
“The Savage Cheering of Go! Go! Go! from the West Point Stands, Placed our Team in a Nervous Fright of Tension and Jitters” – – Worth Lutz, Duke Quarterback.
“With Spirit like that I don’t see how you can lose” – – Steve Owen, Coach of the New York Giants.
Col. Blaik – – “For two years these boys had seen the roughest action. They had lived with the coaching lash, dirt, blood, and defeat.”
“By the time the season got down to the Penn and Navy games, the starting eleven and about four substitutes carried the full load.”
| The Lambert Brothers presenting the Trophy to Leroy Lunn Honoring the Corps of Cadets and The ’53 Team Washington Hall West Point, Dec 1953. Gen Van Fleet Class of 1915 Navy Game Rally.
Bob brings down Duke’s All American Red Smith after a 73 yard run – It was a Game Saving, a Season Saving Tackle. Billy’s Entry into Washington Hall. The Army B Squad.
Class of 1954
15 Rox Shain, QB(2)
21 Bill Purdue, HB
24 Paul Schweikert, HB
30 Kirk Cockrell, LHB
32 Jerry Lodge, FB(16)(17)
48 Freddie Attaya,FB(3)(10)
51 Norm Stephen, C(5)
52 Ken Kramer, C
60 Leroy Lunn, G(6)(14)
62 Dick Ziegler, G(7)(14)
75 Frank Hicks, T
79 Jack Krause, RT
82 Joe Lapchick,LE
83 Lowell Sisson, RE(4)
87 Bob Mischak, LE(1)(18)(19 1953)
(1) Pursuit & Tackle photo is on left. (2) Yanked off the Cadet train,he suited up, kicked off, Stephen’s brutal hit and Sisson’s recovery was the start of the Navy Game.
(3) 3d and 7 against Duke – Lombardi yelled “Run the Gauntlet” – he did. Attaya was lost for the season during the Tulane Game.
(4) Lowell accepted responsibility for the Northwestern loss – having been switched from end to half back and then back to end, he was still trying to grasp the complexities of the defensive schemes. NCAA rule change required a return to Iron Man Football.
(5) Team Captain.
L to R – – Bobby E. Chapman, George E. Perrin, & Richard Jan LeCroy
Class of 1955
16 Jerry Hagan, QB(8)
31 John Wing, HB
37 Fred Kniereim, FB
38 Bill Chance,E
46 Tommy Bell, LHB(19 1954)(20)
58 Ed Zaborowski, C
65 Joe Franklin,G(9)(10)(14)
68 Larry Herdman, G (1)
74 Paul Sullivan, T
85 Godwin Ordway, E(10)
(6) Against Dartmouth, in response to stinging criticism from Col Blaik – he lit a small but growing fire in the team and Corps of Cadets – when at the start of the 2d half he broke from the huddle and ran, almost sprinting to the ball, prompting the team to follow his lead. The roar of approval and support from the Corps each time Norm broke and ran to the ball set the tone for the Season.
(7) His charges took on up to 3 Duke blockers.
(8) Directed First Drive Against Duke.
(9) Doubled Teamed by Ralph Torrance & Duke’s All American Eddie Meadows – Out for the Season.
(10) Out for the Season.
(11) In the grasp off Duke’s All American Tackle – Eddie Meadows, Peter shifted the ball to his left hand, tossing to Attaya for the 1st Down.
(12) Pat scored all 3 Touchdowns against Navy.
(13) Guards played both L & R side.
(14) Kicked Extra Points.
Class of 1956
10 Peter Vann, QB(11)(19 1954)
11 Bill Cody, QB
12 Russ Mericle, QB
22 Mike Zeigler, RHB(10)
25 Jerry Wynn, HB
33 Frank Burd, FB
34 Pat Uebel, LHB(12)
54 Paul Lasley, C
55 Bob Farris, RT(13)
64 Don Shannon, T
66 Nick Bruno, G(14)
63 Ralph Chesnauskas G (14)(15)(17) (19 1954)
70 Ron Melnick, T
71 Howard Glock, LT
84 Don Holleder, RE(19 1954)
(15) Played 2d half of Navy Game blind in one eye.
(16) He was on ground when the runner went by, then he saw Bob come out of no where, he never has seen anyone run as fast catching Duke’s Red Smith 73 Yards from the line of scrimmage.
(17) Played 60 Minutes against Duke.
(18) For over 10 years the story of Bob Mischak’s tackle against Duke was part of West Point’s Military Psychology and Leadership Course – as an example of the power of motivation.
(19) All American
(20) Earned 4 Army A’s in Football
5 Players Missing from Team Photo
Class of 1957
No Plebe Class Gave More. They surrounded the Practice Field each day.
As Plebes they were barred from Varsity Sports by the NCAA.
Over the next 3 Years their players contributed to an 18-8-1 record for Army.
The Class of 1957 gave the Academy one of the finest Gifts of any Class. Next to Eisenhower Barracks just West of the new Library it Stands Firm.
A CADET WILL NOT LIE, CHEAT, OR STEAL, NOR TOLERATE THOSE WHO DO
It must be mentioned at some point that
Elwin Rox Shain ’54
Donald Walter Holleder ’56
Gerard Michael Wynn ’56
and from the Plebe Team
each gave their lives in Vietnam.
|Col Blaik leaving the Field Nov 28th Army 20 – Navy 7 Cheerleaders Back, left to right: Ed Moses ’54, John Clayton ’55, Al Worden ’55, Billy McVeigh ’54, Jay Edwards ’54, Bill Robinson ’55; Tumblers kneeing Peter Jones ’54, Dan Ludwig ’55, Jack Charles ’54, Charles Glenn ’56. Others – Jay Gould & Ben Schemmer ’54 and Alex Rupp ’55. In 1954 Gym Team was asked to provide tumblers Deitzel, Lombardi, Bevan, St Onge, Dobbs, Col. Blaik, Laslie, Amen Constructed by Jay Gould ’54 and the Ord. Dept from a German Rocket Gun captured at Kasserine Pass. First used in the Duke Game.|
The drum beat, the trumpets, the chanting
Jerry Hagan Remembers as does Every Player
“It was continuous, just deafening.”
Go! Go! Go!
|Bob Mischak, ’54 as a player and a coach, participated in 3 Super Bowls, 8 AFC Championships and numerous playoff games. As the starting Offensive Tackle on the 1958 Giant Team he participated in The Greatest Game Ever Played. Bob had this to say of the 1953 Duke Game
“As many reports have stated, the 1953 team “Returned to Glory” with the defeat of the nationally ranked Duke Blue Devils at the Polo Grounds in New York City. From a player’s stand point, that was the epitome of any game, team, and student body support that I’ve been associated with – bar none.”
A Room has been set aside on the 4th Floor over looking the Hudson.
The ’54 and ’55 Class Crests will be black & white – only the ’57 gift to the Academy will be in color.
Most of the boxes will be eliminated.
The Roster will go next to the Plaque at the door.
On the wall in the room will be the Donor Listing.
Contribution Checks should be made out to Hudson River Partners
List 1953 Team on the envelope & check and mail to
|Marina Nayberg Controller
The Thayer Hotel 674 Thayer Road
West Point, NY 10996
The Funding Drive ends 15 June – the Room must be ready by the Fall.
The Thayer will publish (for sale) a Coffee Table Booklet which will include a copy of the Plaque and the ’53 Roster.
A listing of Donors for the 1953 Football Team Room will also be included.
Joe Franklin ’55 & Russ Mericle ’56 provided material and also made numerous corrections – Thanks
In the Room will be a note book containing photos and a more detailed history of the Fall of 1953.
A copy of the Plebe Team photo including the names will be included in the book.
Hopefully we will be able to obtain a listing of B Squad Members
Additional material which will be included are similar to the
home town photo of Leroy Lunn with this year’s Hall High Black Lion Award Winner –
tying the ’53 Army Team Captain; Don Holleder; and the Black Lion Award.
We have copy of the ’54 Howitzer for the Room and Terry Tibbetts’ – – “A Spartan Game: The Life and Loss of Don Holleder”.
Ralph Chesnauskas has given a copy of the Army Navy Program and news articles. The Thayer Room Dedication Program is at –
Note contributions are not tax deductible.