Unbeaten 1933 Sir Bills, Catena, Kimball to be inducted in Capital Region Football Hall of Fame
Two former area players and an area team are among the inductees for the ninth annual Capital Region Football Hall of Fame.
Former Amsterdam player Tom Catena and former Fonda-Fultonville player Aaron Kimball will be part of the Class of 2018, along with the 1933 Johnstown football team.
Catena was a member of the inaugural Greater Amsterdam School District Hall of Fame class in 2015. He also is a doctor who has spent years working in the Nuba Mountains, a fighting-ravaged region of Sudan. In 2017, he earned the $1.1-million Aurora Prize for exceptional humanitarianism. Catena was presented the prize in Armenia’s capital, Yerevan. The prize was established in remembrance of the Armenian survivors of a mass killing by Ottoman Turks.
In 2014, Catena was presented with the National Football Foundation’s Gold Medal, the organization’s highest and most prestigious award.
Catena, a former All-American nose guard at Brown University, established the Mother of Mercy Hospital in the Nuba Mountain region of Sudan along with Bishop Macram Gassis.
The 1933 Johnstown football team went 7-0-1, outscoring its opponents 119-0.
Also part of the Class of 2018 in the player category will be Thomas Abele (Niskayuna), Trevor Anderson (Cobleskill-Richmondville), Tom Arcidacono (Columbia), George Beebe (Salem), Richard Foglia (Catholic Central), Kyle Macey (Lansingburgh), Michael Peacock (Shenendehowa), Kenneth Plue (Rensselaer), Chris Sawyer (Lansingburgh), Tyrone Seabrooks (Christian Brothers Academy) and Theodore Testo (Troy).
This year’s induction class also includes Dale Wotherspoon (official), Carm DePaolo (service to youth football), Ron Ravena (coach/Ballston Spa), Mark Girard (assistant coach/Hudson Falls and Glens Falls), Sam Eppolito (service to football/Granville) Elmer Heidorf (service to football/Hudson Falls), Ambrose Gilligan (service to football/Whitehall) and Norm Preston (service to football/Rensselaer). The 1933 Mont Pleasant team also will be inducted.
A total of 25 area inductees have been part of the first nine classes of the Capital Region Football Hall of Fame.
In 2010, Gloversville’s Tom Ciaccio and Amsterdam’s Justice Smith were part of the inaugural class, while Amsterdam’s Josh Beekman, Gloversville’s Greg Christodulu, Gloversville’s Matt Shell and Gloversville coach Bob Gould were inducted in 2011.
Gloversville’s Justin DeMagistris and Fonda-Fultonville’s Alex Mancini were honored in 2012, while Amsterdam coach Frank Derrico was honored in 2013.
The 2014 class included Johnstown graduate Pete Procopio, Fonda-Fultonville graduate David DiCaprio, Perth graduate Al Marek and Bishop Scully graduate Brian Niezgoda.
Amsterdam graduate T.J. Czeski was the area’s lone inductee in 2015, while Johnstown graduate Matt Swedick, Mancini, Fonda-Fultonville graduate Micah Kimball, former Amsterdam coach Pat Liverio, Amsterdam graduate Rob Bush and Robert Noto, who worked as an assistant coach at Fonda-Fultonville, Perth, Bishop Scully and Amsterdam.
Mancini, who was inducted as a coach in 2016, is the first person to be inducted into the hall of game as a player and a coach.
Mancini led Fonda-Fultonville to 11 regular season titles and two Section II championships.
In 2017, former Amsterdam High School players Brian Bonanno and Sal Sollecito were inducted.
This year’s ceremony will take place Aug. 4 at the Radisson Turf Inn on Wolf Road in Albany, beginning at 6 p.m. Tickets for the event will cost $55 and include drinks, hors d’oeuvres and the induction ceremony,
For more information, email Nick Fitzgerald at firstname.lastname@example.org.