Hall of Fame additions 2/5/2014
Additions to our Hall of Fames include…
Resident Hall of Fame
Montgomery County Sheriff
John Durante will forever be remembered as the Montgomery County Sheriff who hailed from Conshohocken, and John was a good Sheriff, but filling the position of Sheriff was really such a small part of who he was and what he did for the Conshohocken community.
John was a fireman, served as a Senior Instructor at the Montgomery County Fire Academy, and as instructor for the Pennsylvania State Fire Academy. John’s work and actions with the Plymouth Ambulance speak for themselves. The ambulance company fell onto financial hard times and John stepped in as President and CEO of the company not only to restore finances but restore the trust and integrity back into the community.
John’s work in law enforcement could fill a 500 page book, a 1,000 page book if he were telling it!
But with John, he was always out helping someone in need, some organization in need, some church in need. Christmas toys for kids, John was a “giver,” if he heard of someone in need, he handled it. For years John presented a $5,000 check to the Conshohocken Youth Foundation, his funding gave kids a chance to see Phillies games, but would never allow a picture of the donation, “Don’t worry about it, just make sure the kids get the money,” that was John’s reply. The Conshohocken Little League fell on hard times when more than $4,000 went missing in a robbery, John quietly handled it, presenting them with a $5,000 check.
When a high school student living in a shelter needed clothes for school, John didn’t discuss it, he said “go buy the clothes, I got it covered.” When SS Cosmas and Damian Church was in need of repairs and new front steps, John was on the front lines financing the projects, he didn’t do it because he had the money, he did it out of the kindness of his heart, and he had a big heart. When three kids from Conshohocken lost their parents, John set up college fund for all three kids.
If anyone mentioned “Conshohocken” for any reason and John was within ear shot, everyone around him knew it was coming, “Let me tell you something about Conshohocken,” and then John would go on about the borough he lived in, and couldn’t have been prouder of his roots.
When John passed away in February 2010, the Law Enforcement family lost a special guy, the county lost a special Sheriff, but for Conshohocken it was bigger than most people will ever know, unless you knew John, no amount of talking will make anyone understand what the borough lost.
Very few residents could talk as much as John did, but he always backed up every word he said.
No resident could ever fill the shoes John Durante wore, there’s no explaining that, John passed away in 2010 and everyone that knew him, well, they can still hear him talking!
Event Hall of Fame
Conshohocken Christmas Dinner
Feeding The World, Starting With Conshohocken
December 25th, 2013
Josh Leone and his wife Erin hosted a free Christmas Dinner held at the Fellowship House in Conshohocken and invited anyone, and everyone who wanted to sit down for a wonderful, warm, relaxing dinner. The dinner wasn’t about feeding the poor and/or needy, although everyone was invited. But it was also for residents who were alone over the holidays and wanted to share dinner and companionship with other neighbors of the community. College students, senior citizens, singles, employees who had traveled to the Conshohocken area but were unable to get home for the holidays all enjoyed a great meal.
Josh, Erin and an army of volunteers stepped in to help load and warm the food, serve and clean-up following the event. Local businesses who donated food and drinks without a lot of fanfare showed the commitment they have to the Conshohocken community. Donations from the local food businesses included Guppy’s Good Times, Izenberg’s Deli, Digicomo Brothers, Starbucks, Southern Cross, Franzone’s, Fingers Wings and Other Things, Cantina Feliz, Adobe Café and the Stone Rose among others. Great support came from local residents as many of them supplied homemade desserts. The event was successful and many happy holiday diners who attended are looking forward to next year. Conshohocken Christmas Dinner is certainly Conshystuff.com Hall of Fame worthy.
To view our Residents and Events Hall of Fame, please visit… http://conshystuff.com/conshystuff-com-hall-of-fame-1st-listing/
Sports Hall of Fame
Basketball, Kindness, and a Smile
Don Stemple racked up 637 career CYO Basketball victories with St. Gertrude’s, SS Cosmas & Damian and Conshohocken Catholic during a nearly 50 year run in coaching. When it all started back in 1952 Don would have been happy with a dozen career victories as he posted a 6-12 season with St. Gertrude’s. The following year Stemple’s West Conshohocken hoopsters went 2-10, giving him a total of eight victories in two seasons.
In 1954 his team went 20-1 and Mr. Stemple was on his way to more than 600 victories. In 1961 his team posted a 30-6 season and from 1962-1964 Dons CYO teams went 108-17 that included a championship season with a 42-2 record. The numbers for Don Stemple go on and on, but it really never was about numbers to Don. He was interviewed many times over the years and following a 28-2 season in 1987-88, and a 30-3 record the following year Don was very clear when he said “Let’s face it, it didn’t have a lot to do with coaching, there were some very talented girls on these teams.”
Ask any coach, posting 637 career victories certainly has a lot to do with the coach. He coached both boys and girls in his more than 45 years of coaching, and every one of the kids that ever played for him love him, as a coach, as a leader, and a great mentor.
Don coached for all the right reasons, how much can a player progress during the season, perhaps Don wanted to give a child a little more attention making them feel a little bit more like a contributing member of the team. He also coached the West Conshohocken Raiders Midget Football team from 1972-1976 winning championships. Don also coached football at St. Matthew’s in 1955 as an assistant coach and in 1957 he served as an assistant basketball coach at St. Matthew’s High School.
His connections with the kids is what made Don Stemple great, that’s what landed him in the Montgomery County Coaches Hall of Fame, and that’s exactly what landed him in the Conshystuff.com Hall of Fame. To view our complete Sports Hall of Fame…