Union High School Athletic Hall of Fame seeking its first nominations

Back in 1976, Elliott Maddox was the starting right fielder for the New York Yankees in Game 1 of the World Series.

Just four years ago Darnell Stapleton was one of the offensive linemen blocking for Ben Roethlisberger when Big Ben in the final minute of the Super Bowl drove the Steelers down field for the game-winning touchdown.

Former softball all-stater and 1995 graduate Kelly Kulick has become the most prolific women’s bowling champion of the present generation.

Maddox, Stapleton and Kulick all called Union High School their home for four years and were among the very many talented athletes that the Union County school has produced over the years.

Lou Rettino guided the Union football team to a still-record 10 North 2, Group 4 playoff championships. His record in the playoffs was an outstanding 22-5.

Gordon LeMatty guided the Union baseball team to multiple Group 4 state championships and both GNT and UCT titles.

As a result, Union High School has established an Athletic Hall of Fame to promote and to recognize the achievements of those exemplary student-athletes, coaches and teams that have brought honor to Union High School and the community.

The Athletic Hall of Fame Committee is seeking nominations from the public from which inductees will be elected by a Hall of Fame Committee.

Members of the community, the press, alumni of Union High School, or teaches can nominate individuals, coaches or teams as long as established criteria is met.

Candidates for election shall be those individuals who competed, coached, supported or contributed in a positive manner to the Athletic Program at Union High School.

With the exception of the first two classes, candidates must have graduated 10 or more years prior to being considered. Coaches must be retired from coaching. Teams can only be considered after 10 years from the relevant year.

In addition, any individual who lends exemplary support and passion to promoting the Union High School Athletic Program through service and donation of time, leadership, talent, funding and energy may be nominated for election.

Nominations must be received by April 30 to Linda Ionta, Athletic Director, at Union High School, 2350 North Third Street, Union, New Jersey, 07083, or nominations can be e-mailed:

All nomination forms can be obtained in person or by visiting the athletic office at Union High School, by visiting the Union High School website or by visiting the Township of Union schools webstie at twpunionschools.org.

There, nominations can be made for team, coach, special contributor and student-athlete.

– JR Parachini