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Hall of Famer Gerald (Butch) Boettcher (left) was presented by former New Richmond High School teacher Wilbur Falkenthal.

Emotions fill New Richmond Athletic Hall of Fame inductions

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Emotions fill New Richmond Athletic Hall of Fame inductions
New Richmond Wisconsin 127 South Knowles Avenue 54017

Tears were shed and laughs were shared, showing the emotion of the moment, when the second class of the New Richmond High School Athletic Hall of Fame was inducted on Saturday.

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Eleven new members entered the Hall of Fame, joining the 12 members who were the inaugural Hall of Fame class last year. Approximately 250 people attended Saturday’s induction luncheon, held in the New Richmond High School commons.

The new inductees are Jack Bartlett, Gerald (Butch) Boettcher, Fred Brekke, John Elkin, Jim Jarchow, Dave Marson, Dan Olien, Sten Pierce, Wayne Siebold, Ted Stephens and Wayne Thomas.

Here are summaries of their inductions.

Jack Bartlett was presented by high school teammate Tom Tjader. Bartlett was the 1970 New Richmond High School Athlete of the Year. Bartlett was a standout in football, wrestling and track. Bartlett spoke proudly about his years as a Tiger and the bonds with his teammates.

Gerald (Butch) Boettcher was presented by former teacher Wilbur Falkenthal. Boettcher was the 1964 New Richmond High School Athlete of the Year. He was a standout in football, basketball and baseball, captaining all three teams as a senior. He then played a year of football for UW-Madison. Boettcher said the strong foundation he received in sports in New Richmond set him up well for a career in business.

Fred Brekke was presented by former New Richmond football coach Joe Jamieson. Brekke, who died in 1995, was represented by his son, Eric. Brekke was a 1937 New Richmond High School graduate. He went on to play on a scholarship at Tulane University where he lettered three times. Tulane played in the 1940 Sugar Bowl, losing to eventual national champion Texas A&M 14-13. Brekke went on to a long career in education and coaching, including teaching several years in New Richmond.

John Elkin was presented by former high school teammate Steve Skoglund. Elkin excelled in football, basketball and baseball, including being part of the 1973 Tiger basketball state tournament team. Elkin was then a four-year starting quarterback at UW-Stout, earning team MVP and All-WSUC honors. Elkin was an assistant coach when the Tiger boys basketball team returned to state in 1997. He also served as head coach of the Tigers from 2003-2005. Elkin and his family have been loyal Tiger backers and he said that he will always be a Tiger.

Jim Jarchow was presented by lifelong friend Dave Berkholder. Jarchow was a standout in football, wrestling and track. He was a leader on the 1964 Tiger football team that won a conference title for the first time in 21 years. He advanced to state in wrestling as a senior, finishing with a 48-5 career record. He played college football for UW-Stout under coach Sten Pierce, his high school coach, earning All-WSUC honors his junior and senior seasons.

Dave Marson was presented by high school track coach, Stan Barr. Marson, a 1982 graduate, is one of the most successful Tiger track athletes of all time. He won four state championships and set five Tiger school track records. His record in the 100-meter dash still stands. Marson was also a three-year letterwinner in football and basketball. After high school, Marson was a top sprinter at Macalester College. Barr gave Marson the ultimate compliment by saying Marson was the most dedicated track athlete Barr ever coached.

Dan Olien was presented by his high school football coach, Joe Jamieson. Small in stature but with immeasurable heart, Olien was a record setter in football and track. In one game in his senior season, Olien accounted for 462 total yards in a win over Amery. He rushed for 1,216 yards that year, the fourth Tiger to ever reach the 1,000-yard mark. Olien qualified for the state track meet six times in his career and won four conference titles. He was also named a WIAA Scholar-Athlete. Olien remains a strong supporter of New Richmond’s athletic programs.

Sten Pierce was presented by his friend, J. Hendry Gingras. Pierce, who died in 1999, was represented by his widow, Jan, and their children at the induction. Pierce coached in New Richmond from 1959 to 1965, but left an indelible mark on Tiger athletics. He coached football, wrestling and track. He took a struggling Tiger football program and turned it into an undefeated conference championship team in 1964. He also built the Tiger wrestling team into conference winners, sending four wrestlers to the state tournament. He left New Richmond to coach at UW-Stout, where he served as head football and golf coach.

Wayne Siebold was presented by fellow New Richmond teacher Bill Komula. Siebold coached the Tiger boys basketball team from 1970 to 1979. His teams won four conference championships. The 1972-73 Tigers set a program record with 22 wins while advancing to the WIAA state tournament for the first time in 46 years. The Tigers were defeated at state by Beloit Memorial, the eventual state championship team.

Ted Stephens was presented by his brother, Dave Stephens. Ted Stephens was a premier athlete in football, wrestling and track, graduating in 1966. He was the first state wrestling champion in New Richmond High School history, earning a state title as a junior. He followed that with a second state championship in his senior year, becoming the first Tiger to earn to state championships. He earned a wrestling scholarship to UW-Madison, but a knee injury cut short his career. He has gone on to a successful career in television in Des Moines, Iowa.

Wayne Thomas was presented by his high school teammate, Tom Tjader. Thomas is one of the most gifted athletes in Tiger history, standing out in football, basketball and baseball. He was a two-time all-conference player in football. He led the Tiger basketball team to three straight conference championships and the team’s trip to the 1973 WIAA state tournament. He led the Tiger baseball teams to two conference baseball titles. In college, Thomas became a small college basketball All-American at Northwestern College in St. Paul. Thomas gave an emotional ending to the ceremony by speaking about the death of his son, Derek, and the faith that helped carry him through that ordeal.

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Dave Newman
Dave Newman has been the sports editor at the New Richmond News since 1988. He has covered the action in the Middle Border Conference, Dunn-St. Croix Conference and Big Rivers Conference for nearly 30 years.
(715) 243-7767 x242
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