Deceased Football Autographs

Buried With Their Cleats On

Bob “Sea Biscuit” Boyd  (1928-2009)

End—(Loyola) Los Angeles Rams 1950-51,1953-57   [All-Pro 1954]

He was a lightning-fast man who could score at any time from anywhere.
    Weeb Eubank

 

Preston Carpenter  (1934-2011)

End—(Arkansas) Cleveland Browns 1956-59, Pittsburgh Steelers 1960-63, Washington Redskins 1964-66, Minnesota Vikings 1966, Miami Dolphins 1967

 

John “Big John” Carson  (1930-2009)

End—(Georgia) Cleveland Browns 1954, Washington Redskins 1954-59, Houston Oilers 1960   [#1 Receiving NCAA 1953, All-American 1952]

He was a good player.
    Eddie LeBaron

 

Leon “Ding!Ding!” Clarke (1933-2009)

Wide Receiver/Tight End—(Southern California) Los Angeles Rams 1956-59, Cleveland Browns 1960-62, Minnesota Vikings 1963

No conformist was he.  He ate raw steaks, collected machine guns, and usually had some kind of weird pet in tow, such as a monkey.  (I am sure, however, that none of his unusual habits had anything to do with the fact that a thirty-eight-foot flagpole once fell off a building and landed on his head while he was sitting in his convertible sportscar.)
    Jim Brown

 

Clyde Conner  (1933-2011)

 

End—(Pacific) San Francisco 49ers 1956-63

 

Lloyd "Colt" Colteryahn  (1931-2011)

End—(Maryland) Baltimore Colts 1954-56

 

He is buried in Fort Lincoln Cemetery, Brentwood, Maryland.

Clarence Esser  (1925-2009)

End—(Wisconsin) Chicago Cardinals 1947

I retired due to injury.
    Clarence J. Esser

 

Bernie Flowers  (1930-2011)

Offensive End—(Purdue) Baltimore Colts 1956, Ottawa Roughriders (CFL) 1953  [All-American 1952]

 

Bernie Flowers filled out a questionnaire for me in November 1994.

Ed Frutig  (1918-2011)

End—(Michigan) Green Bay Packers 1941, 1945, Detroit Lions 1946, Corpus Christi Naval Air Station Comets 1942

He's got the grace and the speed. And the tips of his fingers appear coated with glue.

    Fielding Yost

 

 

These newspaper articles from 1945 report on Frutig being picked up and signed by the Lions.

Hal Faverty (1927-2008)

End—(Wisconsin) Green Bay Packers 1952, Toronto Argonauts (CFL) 1953 [All-American INS 1951]

Gene Goodreault  (1918-2010)

End—(Boston College) North Carolina Pre-flight Cloudbusters 1942; Coach—Jacksonville Naval Air Station 1944 [All-American 1940, College Football Hall of Fame 1982]

 

Johnny Greene  (1920-2010)

End/Defensive Back/Blocking Back—(Michigan) Detroit Lions 1944-50

 

I obtained this autograph in a trade in 2010.

Jim Keane  (1924-2011)

Offensive End/Defensive End—(Iowa/Northwestern) Chicago Bears 1946-51, Green Bay Packers 1952 [#1 Pass Receiving 1947]

 

Jim Keane autographed this 1946 report of his contract signing with the Bears. 

Ron Kramer  (1935-2010)

End—(Michigan) Green Bay Packers 1957,1959-64, Detroit Lions 1965-67  [All-American 1955-56, College Football Hall of Fame 1978]

The hardest I was ever blocked was by Ron Kramer.  Ron, not Jerry . . . . Kramer would always lead those murderous Green Bay running sweeps.  The first time he hit me, I wasn't looking for it.  He's 250 pounds and he slammed me right into Lamar Lundy's lap and we both went down.  I hurt all over . . . . there wasn't any time Kramer didn't hit me that he didn't hit me hard.  If I couldn't avoid him completely, I'd try to give him only a little piece of me, but he liked to knock that piece off.  Helluva man.  And always, or almost always, hit me clean.  He was trying to hit me clean always.  You can tell.
    Deacon Jones

 

 

I sent Ron Kramer an 8x10 B&W photo to autograph that I obtained from the Chicago Bears.  He not only signed it, but signed another different 8x10 and sent it to me also.  Very generous. 

Pat Lahey  (1919-2009)

End—(John Carroll) El Toro Marines 1944-45; Hollywood Rangers (PCFL) 1944, Los Angeles Bulldogs (PCFL) 1945; Chicago Rockets 1945-47

 

Ted Lapka  (1920-2011)

 

End—(DePaul/St. Ambrose) 2nd Air Force Superbombers 1945; Washington Redskins 1943-44,1946

 

Ted Lapka autographed this 3x5 card for me on Nov. 30, 1993.

He was buried in Resurrection Cemetery, Justice, Illinois.

Nolan Luhn  (1921-2011)

End—(Kilgore JC/Tulsa) Green Bay Packers 1945-49

 

[He was] a fine end.

             Tony Canadeo

Luhn's ashes are interred at Robbins Cemetery, Coffeyville,  Kansas.                                                                                                                                                                                                          

Virgil "Joe" Lindahl  (1919-2008)

End/Linebacker—(Wayne State) New York Giants 1945

[With the Giants, I only played] 6 games, had a shoulder problem.
    Joe Lindahl

 

Bill McCarthy  (1912-2006)

End—(Notre Dame) New York Yanks 1937

One year when I was playing with the New York Yankees, we booked a game with the Los Angeles Bulldogs for Randalls Island Stadium in the middle of New York City's East River.  That place seldom even drew flies and this particular day was no exception.  Our team came out to warm up and when we looked around the empty stands we didn't feel very happy.  We went back to the dressing room just before game time and then we got the pep talk.  "Don't worry about the crowd," said Jack McBride the promoter, "you'll get paid."  "Yeah, don't worry about the crowd," echoed Jim Mooney, the coach.  "If they start anything, we've got 'em outnumbered."
    Bill McCarthy

 

In 1994 McCarthy sent me several autographs, a letter, and copies of clippings from his football scrapbook.  Autograph requests were a rarity for him and he was pleased to hear from me and generously responded.

Bob Mann (1924-2006)

Offensive End—(Michigan) Detroit Lions 1948-49, Green Bay Packers 1950-54 [#1 Receiving Yards 1949]

Bob was a quiet man with a dry sense of humor.  He could always find humor in almost any situation. He was very perceptive and had an even temper.  That served him well in football.

     Wally Triplett
 

 

I traded a Bob Kennedy 3x5 to obtain this Bob Mann autograph in 2009.  Mann and back Melvin Groomes became the first black players to play on the Lions. 

Dave “Hoppy” Middleton  (1933-2007)

Wide Receiver—(Auburn) Detroit Lions 1955-60, Minnesota Vikings 1961

 

James "Monk" Moscrip  (1913-1980)

Offensive End/Defensive End—(Stanford) Detroit Lions 1938-39 [All-American 1934-35, College Football Hall of Fame 1985]

 

In November 2009 I traded a 3x5 Max John Starcevich autograph to a Virginia collector for this 3x5 album page autograph signed by James Moscrip in 1935.

Watch a video clip of Moscrip garnering All-American honors in 1934.

Paul Moss  (1908-1999)

Offensive End/Defensive End—(Purdue) Pittsburgh Pirates 1933, St. Louis Gunners 1934 [All-American 1932]

 

I traded a Billy Vessels autograph to a Virginia collector in February 2010 for album page autographs of Marty Brill, Warren Heller, and this Paul Moss autograph.

John North  (1921-2010)

End/Defensive Back—(Vanderbilt) Baltimore Colts 1948-50; Coach—New Orleans Saints 1973-75

 

He was buried in Pinecrest Memorial Gardens, Columbia, Tennessee.

Jim Owens  (1927-2009)

End—(Oklahoma) Baltimore Colts 1950 [College Football Hall of Fame 1982]

He was a tall, rangy end with good speed and good hands.  He was an excellent blocker and very strong on defense.
    George Lynn (Oklahoma assistant coach)

 

Fran Polsfoot (1927-1985)

Offensive End—(Washington State) Chicago Cardinals 1950-52, Washington Redskins 1953

Fran was the kind of guy everybody loved, an honest, team player who would punt against the wind when I wouldn't.  He was a no bullshit guy, full of fun, a hell of a competitor and a good student to boot.  He was Pullman's version of Jack Armstrong, the All-American boy every coach and athletic director dreams of having.  Never a problem, on or off the field.

     Don Paul

 

I obtained this 1974 Fran Polsfoot autograph and two other 3x5s from dealer Bill Butts who bought the collection of Rich Laade, my former collecting mentor, after Rich passed away.  I sold several autographs from my collection in 2010 to a collector interested in Auburn players to fund the purchase of this card.

Oliver L. "Ollie" Poole  (1922-2009)

End—(Mississippi/North Carolina) Camp Lejeune Marines 1944; New York Yankees 1947, Baltimore Colts 1948, Detroit Lions 1949

 

He is buried in Roseland Cemetery, Gloster, Mississippi

Bernie Scherer  (1913-2004)

End—(Nebraska) Green Bay Packers 1936-38, Pittsburgh Steelers 1939

Hutson was the Jerry Rice of my era. He'd just jump up against two guys and get the ball; and when he hit the ground he wasn't tethered down, he was gone. He was just so tricky. He wasn't big, but he was fast and agile and he ran with a peculiar lope. I used to consider myself a pretty good pass catcher, but when people ask me about it, I say, “Hell, I was just a decoy for Hutson.”
    Bernie Scherer

Perry Schwartz  (1915-2001)

End—(California) Brooklyn Dodgers 1938-42, New York Yankees 1946; Great Lakes Naval Training Station 1943 [All-American 1937, All Pro 1940-41]

 

Perry Schwartz is buried in Cypress Lawn Memorial Park, Colma, California

Paul Vincent Severin  (1918-2006)

End—(North Carolina) [All-American 1939-40]

 

 

Paul Vincent Severin autographed this 1940 Tom Paprocki cartoon.  Severin is among several who signed a 1940 news announcement of the A.P. All-American team.

He is buried in Woodland Cemetery, Ashland, Virginia.

Ed “Rabbit” Skoronski  (1910-1996)

End—(Purdue) Pittsburgh Pirates 1935-36, Brooklyn Dodgers 1937, Cleveland Rams 1937

There wasn’t any money in football.  We’d play—what?—nine or ten games, and we had to pay our own expenses when we were at home, so a lot of money went for hotel rooms and your food.  Of course, when you were travelling, the club would pay all your expenses.  On the teams I played for, the only thing they furnished was a jersey and maybe a helmet.
    Ed Skoronski

 

This autograph is from a 1-page hand printed letter dated January 27, 1990, sent to me by Ed Skoronski.

Frank Souchak  (1915-2006)

End—(Pittsburgh) Pittsburgh Steelers 1939

 

 

Frank Souchak autographed this 1938 Jack Sords cartoon.

He is buried in San Carlos Cemetery, Monterey, California

Mike Stramiello  (1907-2000)

End—(Colgate) Brooklyn Dodgers 1930-32,1934, Staten Island Stapletons 1932; Coach—Newark Tornadoes (American Association) 1937-38

My first NFL game was in 1930 and was against the Chicago Bears.  It was also the first NFL game for Bronco Nagurski . . . .I caught a pass and started on my way to score a touchdown when something hit me from behind.  It was Bronco.
    Mike Stramiello

 

Majure "Bill" Stribling  (1927-2006)

End—(Mississippi) New York Giants 1951-53, Philadelphia Eagles 1955-57, Toronto Argonauts 1960

I caught only touchdown pass Tom Landry threw in the pros vs. Pittsburgh 1952.
    Bill Stribling

 

Bill Stribling is buried at Benton County Memorial Park, Rogers, Arkansas

Woody Strode  (1914-1994)

End—(UCLA) March Field Fliers 1943-43, Fourth Air Force Fliers 1944; Hollywood Bears (PCFL) 1945; Los Angeles Rams 1946; Calgary Stampeders (CFL) 1948-49

 

I traded a Mac Speedie 3x5 card to get this Woody Strode autograph.

Strode is buried at Riverside National Cemetery, Riverside, California

Ernest Evar Swanson  (1902-1973)

End—(Lombard) Milwaukee Badgers 1924, Rock Island Independents 1925, Chicago Cardinals 1925-27  [major league baseball player 1929-30, 1932-34]

 

Chuck “The Great Opportunist” Sweeney (1914-1999)

End—(Notre Dame) [All-American 1937]

Cecil Isbell from Purdue and I were offered the highest price in the country, one dollar less than Sammy Baugh of Texas Christian.  He got $8000.00.  We were offered $7999.00.  Isbell took it.  I did not.  I was to be the other end from Don Hutson.
    Chuck Sweeney

 

 

Chuck Sweeney autographed this 1938 Jack Sords cartoon.  I also have a 2-page handwritten undated note sent to me by Sweeney.

He is buried at Cedar Grove Cemetery, Notre Dame, Indiana.

Sam Tamburo  (1926-1998)

End—(Penn State) New York Bulldogs 1949

 

Sam Tamburo was cremated and his ashes placed in Allegheny Cemetery, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. 

Robert E. Tanner, Sr.  (1907-1994)

End—(Minnesota) Frankford Yellowjackets 1930

 

Robert Tanner sent me this hand-printed 1-page note dated January 18, 1990.  He writes about playing with and against Bronko Nagurski.  CLICK HERE TO READ A TRANSCRIPTION OF THIS LETTER

Gaynell “Gus” Tinsley  (1915-2002)

End—(Louisiana State) Chicago Cardinals 1937-38,1940 [All-American 1935-36, College Football Hall of Fame 1956, #1 Receiver 1938, All Pro 1937-38]

I tell you what, he was the best football player I ever saw.  And I saw a lot of them.
    Rock Reed

 

 

Gaynell Tinsley autographed the copy of this 1936 All-America news article announcing his selection.  The 1955 All-American football card is from my collection.  I have the complete set that I bought in packs as a 9-year-old kid from Wolfe's Market.  I have had many of the players in that set autograph copies that I made of those cards for them to sign, e.g., Tom Harmon, Frank Sinkwich, Dan Hill, Frank Merritt, etc.

Bob Titchenal  (1917-2009)

End—(San Jose State) Washington Redskins 1940-42, San Francisco 49ers 1946, Los Angeles Dons 1947; Lakehurst Naval Air Station Blimps 1943

I played for the Washington Redskins. But I wanted to play close to home, so I joined the 49ers.

    Bob Titchenal

 

 

Bob Titchenal autographed this 1953 Hal Holmes cartoon.

Flavio "Bull" Tosi  (1912-1994)

End—(Boston College) Boston Redskins 1934-36

I had [pro] offers from five different teams: the Redskins, the New York Giants, the Brooklyn Dodgers, Chicago Cardinals and Green Bay Packers . . . .Why did I choose the Redskins?  Well, the money was the same and it was local.  Being very young, I didn't want to go far from home.
    Flavio Tosi

 

Jim Tyree  (1922-2010)

End—(Oklahoma) Boston Yanks 1948

 

 

He was buried in Floral Haven Cemetery in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma.

Alex Urban  (1917-2007)

End—(South Carolina) Green Bay Packers 1941, 1944-45

 

This autograph was obtained by a trade.

Donald T. "Huck" Vosberg  (1919-1997)

End—(Marquette) New York Giants 1941

 

He was nicknamed "Huck" or "Huckleberry" for his frequent trips to the sloughs and Mississippi River.

John Weiss  (1922-1976)

End/Defensive Back— New York Giants 1944-47; Jersey City Giants (AFL) 1946-50

 

This autograph of John Weiss is on a November 19, 1944, game program of the Giants vs. Packers given to me by Giants' tackle Rusty Kane.  The cover has almost twenty autographs of Giants players.

Billy G. Wilson  (1927-2009)

End—(San Jose State) San Francisco 49ers 1951-60  [#1 Pass Receiving 1954,1956-57, All Pro 1955,1957]

He had to work hard for his success.  Comparatively slow, the 49ers' crack receiver had to overcome this handicap with magnificent hands, split-second timing, and an uncanny manner of running his pass patterns.
    Norm Van Brocklin

 

John S. "Long John" Wilson  (1915-2002)

End—(Western Reserve) Cleveland Rams 1939-42

 

John "Jack" Zilly  (1921-2009)

End—(Notre Dame) Los Angeles Rams 1947-51, Philadelphia Eagles 1952

 

Watch a Video Clip of:

  • Lou Creekmur (Pro Hall of Fame)
  • Art Donovan (Pro Hall of Fame)
  • George McAfee (Pro Hall of Fame)
  • John Mackey (Pro Hall of Fame)
  • Ollie Matson (Pro Hall of Fame)
  • James "Monk" Moscrip (Receivers)
  • Lee Roy Selmon (Pro Hall of Fame)
  • Hank Soar (Defensive Backs/Ends)
  • Ernie Stautner (Pro Hall of Fame)
  • Dick Todd (Running Backs)
  • John Unitas (Pro Hall of Fame)
  • Gene Upshaw (Pro Hall of Fame)
  • Bill Walsh (Pro Hall of Fame)
  • Paul "Tank" Younger (Fullbacks)

Recent Blog Entries

by morevintagefootballautographs2 | 1 comment
by morevintagefootballautographs2 | 2 comments

2010 Deaths

  • Johnny Allen (Centers)
  • Vince Banonis (Centers)
  • Herman "Reds" Bassman (Running Backs)
  • George Blanda (Hall of Fame)
  • Tom Brookshier (Defensive Backs)
  • Al Brosky (Defensive Backs)
  • Lew Carpenter (Receivers)
  • Jack Cloud (Fullbacks)
  • Bull Cochran (Fullbacks)
  • Jim Cooper (Centers)
  • Bobby Davis (Tackles)
  • Don Doll (Defensive Backs)
  • Bill Dudley (Hall of Fame)
  • Brad Ecklund (Centers)
  • Bob Fenimore (Running Backs)
  • Frank Gaziano (Guards)
  • Gene Goodreault (Receivers)
  • John Greene (Receivers)
  • Dick Hoerner (Fullbacks)
  • Stan Jones (Hall of Fame)
  • Bob Kennedy (Fullbacks)
  • Ralph Kercheval (Running Backs)
  • Ron Kramer (Receivers)
  • Cliff Livingston (Defensive Backs)
  • Dick Loepfe (Tackles)
  • Leon Manley (Guards)
  • Don Meredith (Quarterbacks)
  • Bob Momsen (Guards)
  • Dom Moselle (Running Backs)
  • John North (Receivers)
  • Merlin Olsen (Hall of Fame)
  • Elliott Ormsbee (Running Backs)
  • Jim Podoley (Running Backs)
  • Charlie Ream (Tackles)
  • Floyd Rhea (Guards)
  • Les Richter (Defensive Backs)
  • Vic Schleich (Tackles)
  • Saul Sherman (Running Backs)
  • Stan Skoczen (Fullbacks)
  • Gene Spangler (Defensive Backs)
  • Bill Stanton (Defensive Ends)
  • Jim Tarrant (Quarterbacks)
  • George Terlep (Quarterbacks)
  • Nick Toth (Guards)
  • Jim Tyree (Receivers)
  • Hugh Wolfe (Fullbacks)

2011 Deaths

Paul Briggs (Tackles)

George Buksar (Defensive Backs)

Ken Carpenter (Running Backs)

Preston Carpenter (Receivers)

Don Chandler (Running Backs)

Lynn Chandnois (Running Backs)

Lloyd Colteryahn (Receivers)

Clyde Conner (Receivers)

Hal Dean (Guards)

Ralph Felton (Defensive Backs)

Bernie Flowers (Receivers)

Ed Frutig (Receivers)

George "Sonny" Franck (Running Backs)

Gale Gillingham (Guards)

Ralph Goldston (Running Backs)

Bill Gray (Centers)

Garland Gregory (Guards)

George Groves (Guards)

Jimmy Harris (Defensive Ends)

Joe Heap (Running Backs)

Duke Iversen (Defensive Backs)

Bill "Tiger" Johnson (Centers)

John Henry Johnson (Hall of Fame)

Jim Keane (Receivers)

Joe Krupa (Tackles)

Ted Lapka (Receivers)

Jim Lipinski (Tackles)

Nolan Luhn (Receivers)

Lenny Lyles (Defensive Backs)

Vaughn Mancha (Centers)

Norm Masters (Tackles)

Ollie Matson (Hall of Fame)

Hal Miller (Tackles)

Ned Oldham (Receivers)

Lindell Pearson (Running Backs)

Joe Perry (Hall of Fame)

Pete Pihos (Hall of Fame)

Andy Robustelli (Hall of Fame)

Ed Royston (Guards)

Lee Roy Selmon (Hall of Fame)

Harley Sewell (Guards)

Paul Shoults (Running Backs)

Bubba Smith (Defensive Ends)

Herb St. John (Guards)

Art Statuto (Centers)

Bill Stits (Defensive Back)

Norm Willey (Defensive Ends)

Wally Yonamine (Running Backs)

Bob Zimny (Tackles)

2012 Deaths

Tony Aiello (Defensive Backs)

Frank Aschenbrenner  (Running Backs)

John Billman (Guards)

J R Boone (Running Backs)

Royal Cathcart (Running Backs)

John Guzik  (Defensive Backs)

Don Joyce (Defensive Ends)

Don Panciera (Quarterbacks)

John Panelli (Defensive Backs)

Joe Paterno  (Coaches)

Alex Webster (Running Backs)