Longterm USAWA Members

by Al Myers

Dale Friesz has been an active member of the USAWA since the first year of membership in 1988. Dale has had more reasons than anyone to have let his membership lapse, yet he maintained his yearly membership to support the USAWA. Lifters like Dale are the foundation of our organization.

Last week’s Quiz of the Week was a very important one for one simple reason – it gave recognition to those USAWA Members who have been yearly members since the first year of the USAWA.  These 5 USAWA member have showed extreme loyalty to the USAWA by being members all these years.  It is easy to miss a year of membership –  such as a lack of competing due to illness or injury.  I know this could have been  the case for a couple of these lifters, yet they STILL maintained their yearly membership despite the physical hardship. Most lifters don’t do that – they rejoin when they are able to compete again.   These lifters should receive an award for their loyalty to the USAWA (hmmm…. who’s the USAWA Award Director? I may have to talk to him about this.  Especially since NEXT year is the 25th anniversary of the USAWA).  Just for those who missed the quiz, I want to list these USAWA VIP members again:

Bill Clark

Casey Clark

Joe Garcia

Art Montini

Dale Friesz

Now I want to mention a few others that have been longterm members of the USAWA, but maybe now are retired or just joined a little later.  The initial class of members in 1988 included such notable lifters as Bill Clark, Bill DiCioccio Sr., Joe Garcia, Cindy Garcia, John McKean, Noi Phumchaona, Howard Prechtel, John Vernacchio, Casey Clark, Dale Friesz, Jack Lano, Art Montini, Tom Ryan, Bob Burtzloff, Phil Anderson, Steve Schmidt, John Wilmot, Harrison Skeete, Attilio Alacchi, Paul Knauer, Joe McCoy, Dave Hahn, Clay Oliver, Ron Sisk, Gonzalo Gonzlsez, and Ed Zercher.  There were several more than this that joined that year. However, all together, the USAWA membership was still short of 100 members that first year.

USAWA Hall of Famer Frank Ciavattone joined a year later in 1989.  He has been a member every year since.  USAWA Executive Board member Dennis Mitchell also joined in 1989 and hasn’t missed a year of membership.  A couple of long-term members joined in 1990 and haven’t missed any years of membership since joining – our President Denny Habecker and Hall of Famer Jim Malloy.  A few lifters, like John McKean and Steve Schmidt, only missed a few years of continuous membership due to lifting retirement only to reappear as active lifters. All these lifters  deserve special recognition for their many years of support to the USAWA.  The only USAWA club that has maintained club membership since 1988 has been Clark’s Gym.