Digna A. Marte, Principal

Class of 2020

Meet the 2020 inductees

In loving memory of Judith Raffalo

for her many years of support and hard work on behalf of the
Bulkeley High School Hall of Fame.

1962 & 1963 GOLF TEAM
Undefeated

Class of 1962 and 1963

The Bulkeley High School 1962 Golf Team capped a highly successful year in varsity sports competition by various Bulldog teams with an undefeated season. With every member of the team, including Richard and Robert Bukowski, William DiBella, and Guy Garofolo, sharing medalist honors at least once, Bulkeley entered the State Tournament with no blemishes on its ten-match schedule. The team took home and away matches from Weaver, New Britain, Pulaski, East Hartford, and Bloomfield High Schools.

The 1963 Golf Team achieved its second straight undefeated season. The team’s top men, Bob Bukowski, Dick Leavitt, Guy Garofolo, Gerald Frazier, and Mike Plis, number 1-5 men, respectively. Several team members captured top honors, including Bob Bukowski, a four-time medalist, Guy Garofolo, a two-time medalist, and Gerald Frazier fifth place holder at the State tournament. The other team participants were Jim Lavery, a senior, Paul Petry, Peter Silvestri, Bob Bokron, and Dick Aldinger.

Career Highlights:
    • 2 years undefeated seasons (’62, ’63)

    • Won 20 matches consecutively

    • Team member Bob Bukowski, 4-time medalist

    • Team Member Guy Garofolo, 2-time medalist

    • Team member Gerald Frazier, 5th place holder at State level

    • Captain, Richard Bukowski

2000 Men's Basketball Team

Class of 2000

Career Highlights:

    • Class LL State Champs
    • Bulkeley’s First Ever State Basketball Championship
    • First Appearance in a state title game since 1962
    • State Championship MVP – Charles Easterling
    • Hartford Courant and New Haven Register All-State Player – Jorelle Jernigan – 2000
    • Hartford Courant and New Haven Register All-State Coach – Eddie Griffin – 2000
    • Hartford Courant and New Haven Register All-State Player – Charles Easterling – 2001 and 2002

The 15-foot banner that stretched across the wall in front of the main office read, “Bulkeley Bulldog Pride.” Theirs was the first state basketball championship in the history of BHS athletics.  It took 38 years for Bulkeley to get back to a boys basketball state final. It took 32 minutes to win the school’s first championship. The No. 6 seed Bulkeley Bulldogs (22-4) met the No.4 seed Warren Harding of Bridgeport Presidents (24-3).

It was not an easy season for the Bulldogs. After graduating a key player from a 21-5 team the previous year, the team wasn’t sure if they could fill the gap. Still, the Bulldogs put the cap on a brilliant season with a 59-56 upset of 11-time state champion Harding-Bridgeport in the CIAC Class LL title game at Central Connecticut State University. 

The coaching staff credited the team with having a lot of heart and determination with a never-say-die attitude and no thoughts of quitting.

Bulkeley had problems with Harding’s all-out, full-court pressure in the early going with 15 first-half turnovers. But the Bulldogs stayed in the game and didn’t let Harding’s pressure overtake them. Bulkeley was right there at the half.

The teams traded baskets in the early going of the fourth quarter before a three-point play gave the Bulldogs a 55-48 lead with 3:15 left, but the Presidents converted a three-point play and scored inside off a feed and then made a put-back with 58 seconds left.

Just two years before, the team’s record was 2-18.” That makes it even sweeter,” said one Bulldog player. “We turned it around. We made history.”

Robert Bukowski

“Bob”
Athlete
Class of 1963

Bob played two sports for Bulkeley – basketball and golf.  Bob excelled in golf and received three varsity letters, playing on two undefeated golf teams in 1962 and 1963.

As an individual player, in 1961, he shot a 74 at the Pequot Country Club to win the Caddy Golf Title beating out his brother, Richard, by one stroke.  The next month, Bob won the P.A.L.Tournament at Goodwin Park.  In the summer before his junior year and first year as golf team captain, Bob won the Midway Junior Golf Tournament at Keney Golf Course, defeating 393 golfers with a score of 70.

After high school, Bob enlisted in the Navy and served his country in the Vietnam War. Upon returning home from his wartime service, he played many rounds of golf at Goodwin Park and won Club Championships in 1974, 2001, 2002 & 2015 (at the age of 70 with scores of 69 & 71). In 1994 and 2005, Bob won the Greater Hartford Amateur Championship.

Bob played many CSGA events in retirement and competed against the State of Connecticut’s best senior amateur golfers.

In 2010, he was one of the Final Four Finalists in the CT. Senior Match Play Championship at Gillette Ridge in Bloomfield.  To this day, Bob continues to play the game he loves best.

Career Highlights:
    • 1961 Caddy Golf Title Champion at Pequot Golf Club

    • 1961 Police Athletic League (P.A.L.) Champion Goodwin Park

    • 1962 Midway Junior Golf Champion Keney Park

    • 1962 & 1963 back to back undefeated seasons

    • Three-time letter winner

    • Four-time Goodwin Park Club Champion (‘74, ‘01, ‘02, ‘15)

    • Ten-time Goodwin Park Senior Club Champion (2000, ‘03-’07, ‘09-’12)

    • At the age of 70, he was the oldest player at Goodwin to win a Club Championship.

    • 2 time Greater Hartford District Amateur Championship (1994 & 2005)

    • 2010 GSGA CT Senior Match Play Final Four finalists

WILFREDO C. COLLAZO

Athlete
Class of 1976

Career Highlights:
    • Hartford Courant All-City Football Team, Offensive End, 1975

    • Hartford Courant All-City Football Team, Offensive End, 1976

    • Hartford Courant First Team All-CDC Football Team, Offensive End & Safety, 1976

    • Led Bulkeley High School football team in receiving, interceptions and tackles (8.3 per game)

    • Track & Field All-Conference, 120 High Hurdles

    • Named Bulkeley High School Defensive Team MVP, 1976

    • Awarded Bulkeley High School “Athlete of the Year”, 1976

    • Awarded football scholarship to West Virginia State University, 1976

    • All-WVIAC Football Team, Safety, 1976

    • Secondary Team Captain, WSVU, 1977

    • Starting Wide Receiver for semi-professional German football team, Dusseldorf Panthers, 1982

Wilfredo Collazo was a standout student-athlete at Bulkeley High School from 1972-1976, where he lettered in 3 sports – football, basketball, and track.

In his junior year, Wilfredo was selected to the All-City Football Team as an offensive end.  As a senior, he was named to his second consecutive All-City Football Team, including First-Team All-CDC, as both an offensive & defensive player.  He was the only football player in the Capital District Conference to be selected first-team both on offense and defense.  In basketball, Wilfredo was considered one of the best defensive players on the team.  Coach Joe DiChiara often called on him to defend some of the top shooting guards in the conference.  In track & field, Wilfredo won first place in the 120 high hurdles where he earned All-Conference in that event.  Wilfredo was the 1976 “Athlete of the Year” for his overall achievement and contribution to Bulkeley’s athletic program, and “Defensive Most Valuable Player” in football.  In addition to his athletic accomplishments, Wilfredo was also involved with the student body activities.  He was the President of the DECA Club and Senior Class Vice President.

Wilfredo earned a football scholarship to West Virginia State University, where he served as President of Theta Psi Chapter, Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. and voted “Mr. West Virginia State” in 1979.  As a freshman, he made an immediate impact on the football field that resulted in the head coach, making him the starting safety.

Wilfredo was named the Defensive MVP during the 1976 Homecoming game against Kentucky State University.  He was selected to the WVIAC All-Conference Football Team as a freshman.  In 2014, Wilfredo was inducted into the West Virginia State University National “W” Club Sports Hall of Fame for football.  He earned a B.S. degree in Business Administration and earned the commission of Second Lieutenant in the U.S. Army, where he proudly served for fourteen years.  As a career military officer, he attained the rank of Major.

RANDALL FALLS

“Randy”
Athlete
Class of 1972

Randall was a three-sport athlete in football, track, and wrestling, earning varsity letters in track and wrestling.  Coach Vertefuille was Randy’s coach in track and wrestling and inspired Randy to be a better athlete and to continue to college.  He graduated CCSU in 1983, earning dean’s list recognition in his final year.  A highlight of Randy’s career was his record-breaking pole vault of 11’3” against Goodwin Tech.  To younger boys, he was a mentor and teacher.  To his contemporaries, he was a good and faithful friend.  After high school, Randy took that caring attitude and leadership skills into the world, pursuing a successful career as a nurse in both the Navy and Veteran’s Administration.

He continued to excel in sports by channeling his energies into water sports.  He was a part of a world champion canoe-racing club in 1990, which he described as an “awesome experience.” 

He earned a spot on the first team of a club in Hawaii who won the world championships and set a new world record. The team went on to win the Hamilton Cup in Australia.  In 1992, this “masters” (35 years + division) first team won the national championship in outrigger canoe racing.  Randy was 40 at the time.  At age 62, he made the first team in San Diego Outrigger several times, which included racing 26 miles from Maui to Molokai. 

He continues to paddle canoes, bike, and play basketball.  Randy expresses much gratitude to his very first Coach, Bob Rafallo.   Although Coach Rafallo denied him a spot on the basketball team in 7th grade, Randy went on to discover his full potential in wrestling and became a champion at Bulkeley.  Randy recalls Coach Rafallo was the first to shake his hand as he walked off the mat as a sectional champ in 1971.

Career Highlights:

    • Football 1968-1970

    • Track and Wrestling 1969-1972
    • 1971 voted “Most Improved” wrestler

    • CDC Champion, 1971-1972 @ 138 lb. weight class

    • Wrestling State Championships, 3rd place 1972

    • Fastest pin award, 1972

    • Tri-Captain, Wrestling, 1972

    • 1972 Season Record @138 lbs. was 15-1

    • Track Team Pole Vault School Record, 1971, @ 12’

    • Track Team 440 Relay School Record, 1971

    • 1972 5th place State finish, Pole Vault

    • Only BHS Bulldog at State Track Meet, 1972

    • 1972 earned 3 State Tournament medals in Track & Wrestling

    • 1976-1977 CCSU Track Team 1st team pole vaulter, 1977

    • Personal Career Pole Vault record at CCSU of 12’6”

    • 1990 National Honors representing the USA vs. Australia winning Hamilton Cup in outrigger canoe racing event1992 National Honors US National Championships in outrigger canoe racing, Masters Division 35 years and over.  1st place national championship

Career Highlights:
    • Varsity Swimmer, 4 years, 1968-1971

    • Co-Captain, Bulkeley High School Swim Team

    • 3 years CDC Champion

    • 60-yard freestyle, Bulkeley High School record

    • 200-yard individual medley, Bulkeley High School record

    • 100-yard backstroke, Bulkeley High School record

    • 200-yard medley, Bulkeley High School record

    • State Champ in 200-yard medley relay team as a sophomore at SCSU

    • Finalist, 3rd place, NE State Championships as a sophomore at SCSU in the backstroke

    • Bulkeley High School Junior class President

    • Bulkeley High School Representative to the Hartford City Council

STEPHEN FALLS

“Steve”
Athlete
Class of 1972

Steve competed in various events as a varsity swimmer throughout his high school career.  Although he held school records in the 60-yard freestyle, the 200-yard individual medley, the 100-yard backstroke, and the 200-yard medley relay, his most significant accomplishment was finishing first in the State as part of the 200-yard medley relay squad in his sophomore year.  He was chosen to the All CDC swimming team in his sophomore, junior, and senior years.  Steve was

coached by Bulkeley High School’s very own Hall of Famer from the Class of 2017, Jim Brophy. 

Steve was very involved with school activities. He was elected BHS Representative to the Hartford City Council, served as Junior Class President, and worked on the 1972 yearbook staff. 

Steve continued his swimming career at Southern Connecticut State University.  He made First Team in the backstroke event and the medley relay teams.  He placed in the New England Swimming Championships in his sophomore year at SCSU. 

Steve’s enthusiasm for athletics continued after college.  He liked to run distance races, particularly in the California Bay area.  When he wasn’t traveling the world enjoying a career in the hospitality industry, Steve made his home in San Francisco.

CHARLES L. FERGUSON

“Fergie”
Coach
Class of 1978

“Don’t ever give anyone the opportunity to take something away from you that you enjoy doing.”

During his four years at Bulkeley High School, Charles was a 4-year football player and a 4-year wrestler.  In 1978, he placed 2nd in the CIAC Class L state championship.

A 4-year letter winner on the wrestling team and a 2-year letter winner on the football team, Charles was also a 4-year member of the high school marching band, concert band, and jazz band.

After graduating, Charles went on to Linfield College in McMinnville, Oregon, where he studied music education.  The Linfield College wrestling head coach noticed him wearing his BHS wrestling jacket and invited him to a wrestling team meeting.

Charles joined the college team that night.  Charles broke into the varsity line up wrestling at the 159 lb. weight class and participated in the battle of wrestle-offs—the first freshman in college history to do so.

Charles has held various coaching positions.  In 1989, he was Assistant Head Coach at Hall High School.  In 1993, Charles became the head wrestling coach at BHS, taking over for his longtime coach, Roger Vertefeuille, and continued the winning tradition of BHS wrestling.  In 2004, Charles became head wrestling coach at New Britain High School.  In his coaching career, his teams earned a total of 400 wins.  Charles is presently the president & founder of two youth programs in the Greater Hartford area: “The Hartford Wildcats Youth Football Association” and “The New Britain “PAL” Twisters Youth Wrestling Club.”

Career Highlights:

    • 14 CCC Conference Championships, Bulkeley High School Wrestling

    • 400 Career Wins as Head Coach

    • 1989-1992 Assistant Coach, Hall High School Wrestling

    • 4 Conference Championships, Hall High School Wrestling

    • 6 State Open Championships, Hall High School Wrestling

    • 5 Class L and LL Qualifiers, Hall High School Wrestling

    • 2 All State Finalists, Hall High School Wrestling

    • 1993-2003 Head Coach, Bulkeley High School

    • 2004-2017 Head Wrestling Coach, New Britain High School

    • 46 CCC Conference Champions

    • 4 State Champions

    • 1 All American

Career Highlights:
    • 1973-1974 All CDC Conference 1st Team Baseball

    • 1972-1974 All CDC Champion, Wrestling, 132 lb. weight class

    • All Central District Sectional Tournament Champion, Wrestling, 132 lb. weight class

    • All CIAC State Tournament 4th place finalist, Wrestling

    • Earned 3 consecutive Varsity Letters, Wrestling

    • Tri-captain, Wrestling Team

    • Varsity & Junior Varsity Letters, Baseball

    • Varsity Letter, Soccer

EDWIN GARCIA

Athlete
Class of 1974

Edwin attended Bulkeley High School from September 1970-June 1974.  He was a member of the 1971-1972 soccer and wrestling teams and a member of the 1971 – 1973 wrestling and baseball teams.  A multi-sport athlete, Edwin earned varsity letters in his sophomore year for soccer and wrestling, and a junior varsity letter for baseball.  In his junior year, he earned varsity letters in for baseball at first base and soccer at the striker position.  In his senior year, Edwin was selected for the All-Capital District Conference Team at first base.  He earned his second Varsity letter in baseball and his third consecutive Varsity letter in wrestling. He as All CDC Champion at 132 lbs.; All-Central District Sectional Tournament Champion at 132 pounds.; All CIAC All-Statewide Tournament, 4th Place Finalist, and tri-captain of the wrestling team.  In his junior year, Edwin was All-CDC Champion at 132 lbs. 

Edwin went on to earn his Associate’s Degree in General Studies from Manchester Community College, a B.A. degree in Political Science from Trinity College, and an M.S. degree in Education Leadership from Central Connecticut State University.    He is a retired Spanish teacher from the Bristol Public School system and retired from the City of Hartford Police Department.

As a member of the Connecticut General Assembly’s House of Representatives Bonding Sub-Committee, Edwin helped procure state funding for the Bulkeley High School outdoor athletic field behind the premises and funding for the improvement of the adjoining baseball, softball and soccer fields located in Colt’s Park.

FRANK J. GIONFRIDDO

“Frankie”
Athlete
Class of 1991

Frankie Gionfriddo was an outstanding athlete in basketball and played three varsity seasons.  Frankie came from a family of outstanding Bulkeley High School Football Players: his father (’61), and his two uncles (’58, ’62).  His father, Fran, and Uncle Paul were outstanding running backs.  His Uncle Rel was an outstanding offensive guard and defensive linebacker.  It was said that Frankie could have been the best football player in the family.  Instead, he chose basketball, so that chapter remains unwritten. 

Yet Frankie excelled at Basketball and in 1990, he was named the MVP of the Doc Hurley Classic. He was named the best player from all nine teams that were in the tournament.  Sportswriter Roberto Gonzalez of the Hartford Courant described how Frankie led his team to victory: “His eyes are ever probing and scanning the court, his demeanor is always cocksure and driven to win.”  Gonzalez continued, “No one is open to pass to? ‘Shoot.’ From the 3-point line? Even Better.  The Stumpy 5-foot 9 shooting guard led Bulkeley with 22 points in a 52-40 victory over Bloomfield in the Doc Hurley Classic/Courant Scholarship Classic.”

Bob Raffalo coached at Bulkeley High School for thirty-seven years as an assistant in basketball, and shared that since the 3-point line was put on the court, he “never witnessed any basketball player make six 3-pointers in one game”.  In his opinion, “Frankie stands among the great shooters in the Bulkeley basketball annals.”

Career Highlights:

    • Connecticut Coaches Association All-Star Team, 1990

    • MVP Doc Hurley Classic, 1990

    • All league CCC South, 1990

    • The leading scorer in Doc Hurley Classic “22 points per game”, 1990

    • Picked for Doc Hurley Classic All-Star Team, 1990

    • Scored over 1000 points in 3 Varsity seasons

    • Top 100 players in Bulkeley High School history

    • Bulkeley High School record made “Six 3-pointers” in one game

Career Highlights:
    • Basketball, Three Varsity Letters

    • Hartford Courant Player of the Week

    • In 1953 awarded a Scholarship to University of Hartford, Hillyer College

    • University of Hartford Basketball, Three Varsity Letters

    • Drafted into the U.S. Army for a two-year commitment in 1957 where he served as a radio operator and drill sergeant

    • In 1956 coached the Boys’ Brigade Basketball Team

    • Joined the Connecticut Governor’s Foot Guard serving as a Color Guard Sergeant at many civic ceremonies, parades and military events

ROBERT GRABEK

“Bob”
Athlete
Class of 1951

Bob Grabek played three years of basketball for the Bulkeley High School Hall of Fame coach, Babe Allen.  Bob was considered one of the first all-around athletes to attend BHS.  He was named the Hartford Courant Player of the Week for his performance against Windham High with his rebounding performance and 18 points scored.  He played semi-professional baseball in the Hartford Industrial League.  Bob earned a tryout with the NBA St. Louis Hawks and attended Hillyer College at the University of Hartford on a basketball scholarship.

A highlight of Bob’s high school basketball career was in 1951 when the Bulldogs defeated Weaver High School, making two free throws after time expired.    Hartford Courant sportswriter Bob Williams wrote, “a skinny, six-foot three-inch towhead named Bob Grabek will always be remembered as the boy who broke Weaver’s 12 games winning streak with two foul shots after time expired.” Babe Allen told his 1950-1951 City Championship Team – Captain Felix Karsky, Ernie Cermola, Bob Grabek, Bob Alexander, Tom Hurley, Bob Marianella, Roger Lynch, and Jim Murphy – “You’re the finest team I’ve ever coached in 25 years.”

ERIC MANGINI

Coach
Class of 1989

Eric Mangini attended Bulkeley High School from 1985 to 1989 and was a linebacker for Bulldogs football throughout his high school career.  Eric attended Wesleyan University from 1989 to 1994 playing nose tackle for the Cardinals, where he holds the school’s single-season (11.5) and career (36.5) sacks records.

Eric started his unique path as a head coach by leading the Kew Colts, a semi-professional football team in Melbourne, Australia, to 2 regional championships and then in the Cleveland Browns’ organization as a ball boy and front office assistant.  He rose through the ranks as an assistant with the Baltimore Ravens and the New York Jets before joining the New England Patriots as Secondary Coach in 2000, and then Defensive Coordinator in 2005.  He is one of the few coaches in the NFL who has worked on both the offensive and defensive side of the ball.  He was part of the 1996 Jets staff that took a 1-15 team to the AFC Championship 2 years later and part of the 2000 Patriots staff that led a 5-11 squad to 3 Super Bowl victories in 4 years.

In 2006 at 34 years old, one of the youngest head coaches in NFL history, Eric was hired as Head Coach of the New York Jets. Mangini’s combined commitment and dedication laid a foundation for the team that paved the way for the Jets’ consecutive AFC Championship appearances.

In 2009, Eric became the Head Coach of the Cleveland Browns. His tenure with the team was cut short because of a change in management.  He has since taken on a variety of roles with the San Francisco 49ers and The New Zealand Warriors of the National Rugby League.  Eric has also developed into a critically acclaimed studio analyst on ESPN and Fox. 

In 2002, he founded the Carmine & Frank Mangini (CFM) Foundation to benefit under-resourced children.  He continues to work with community charities and has been involved in NFL and USO programs, including those aimed at concussion awareness and prevention.

Career Highlights:

    • 1995, Offensive Assistant, Cleveland Browns

    • 1996, Offensive Assistant, Baltimore Ravens

    • 1997-1999, Defensive Assistant, New York Jets

    • 1998, Staff Member of New York Jets AFC Championship team

    • 2000-2004, Defensive Backs Coach, New England Patriots

    • 2005, Defensive Coordinator, New England Patriots

    • 2006-2008, Head Coach, New York Jets

    • 2009-2010, Head Coach, Cleveland Browns

    • 2013-2014, Tight Ends Coach, San Francisco 49ers

    • 2015, Defensive Coordinator, San Francisco 49ers

    • Studio Analyst for NFL on ESPN and Fox Sports

Career Highlights:
    • Bulkeley High School, three years football

    • CCSU 4 year starter football

    • New England All-State College team, 2nd team

    • 1970, CT Coach of the Year, Track & Field, CCSU

    • 1984, received the CCSU Kaiser Award and Distinguished Alumni Award

    • 1988, selected as Co-Head Coach for the U.S. Track team visiting England and Russia

    • 2009, selected Connecticut Golf Coach of the Year

    • 2011, a finalist for National High School Coach of the Year

    • Earned 819 coaching career victories

    • Coached for over 50 years

THEODORE ORZECH

“Ted”
Coach
Class of 1952

Ted played football for three years at Bulkeley High School.  He then attended CCSU, where he was a four-year starter on the football team.

He was named to the New England All-State College 2nd team.

Ted was a teacher in the Farmington school system for 35 years. He coached Track & Field at Central Connecticut State University.  In 1970, Ted was selected Connecticut Track and Field Coach of the Year. CCSU inducted Ted into its athletic hall of fame in 1984.  He received the Kaiser Award and the Distinguished Alumni Award, the highest award granted to a graduate of the University.

In 1988, Ted was appointed co-head coach for a U.S. track team that visited England and Russia.  In 2009, he was selected golf coach of the year in CT, and in 2011, he was a finalist for National High School Coach of the Year. Under his leadership, his track teams won four state championships, and his track and field and golf teams earned 819 victories.

Ted was also a founding member of the West Hartford Men’s Softball League and was very active in town sports leagues.

DENNIS PABICH

“Denny”
Athlete
Class of 1962

Dennis attended Bulkeley High School from September 1958 to June, 1962.  He excelled as an athlete in both football (under Coaches Karski and Korisky) and track & field (under Coaches Karski and Babe Allen).  In football, he played at the defensive left end and offensive end positions. 

He was honored to be a football co-captain in his senior year and was selected as CDC All-Conference in both his junior and senior years.  He was also an outstanding co-captain of the track & field team in his senior year.

He was limited to just three events (shot put, discus, and javelin) even though he was faster than most of the sprinters.  He set a long-standing Bulkeley High School record in the shot put competition at Weaver High School with a toss of 52’9”.  He won first place in all 3 of his events at the New London track meet.

Dennis was also President of the Boys’ Club his senior year.  He attended Purdue University (1962-1966) on a football scholarship, where he played both at the offensive tight end and left defensive end positions.  It is interesting to note that Purdue became aware of Dennis’s football talents because of a written letter of recommendation to Purdue first made by Coach Tony Appiso (head coach of arch-rival and powerhouse New Britain High School). 

During his four years at Purdue, the Boilermakers were in the top echelon of the Big Ten Conference.  The Boilermakers were 3-1 against Notre Dame, 4-0 against Michigan, 4-0 against Iowa, and 4-0 against Wisconsin.  No team in the country has achieved such a remarkable achievement.

During his last semester at Purdue, Dennis was drafted by Uncle Sam.  Upon graduating with a B.S. degree in Industrial Management and Economics, Dennis elected to become an officer in the United States Air Force.  During his military career, he achieved the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.  He also gained a Master’s degree in Management from the University of Arkansas.

Career Highlights:

    • Football co-captain in his senior year

    • CDC All-Conference, junior and senior years

    • Co-captain, Track & Field, senior year

    • Long-standing Bulkeley High School Shot Put record holder, 52’9”

    • President, Bulkeley High School Boys’ Club

    • Served with the U.S. Air Force earning the rank of Lieutenant Colonel

Career Highlights:
    • Played three years of varsity football for two BHS/HOF coaches Ed Korisky and Felix Karsky
    • Ziggy was a shot putter for the track team at BHS for three years with his HOF coach Felix Karsky, who was a shot putter at BHS and Trinity College
    • Ziggy was awarded the most valuable player award, named after another BHS/HOF coach, Babe Allen as the Best Player for BHS in the 1960 Thanksgiving game against New Britain High Schoo
    • Attended Trinity College in Hartford Connecticut
    • Played four years of Varsity Football
    • He was Small College New England Champion in the Track event for the Shot Put
    • In 1964 graduated from Trinity College with a BS degree in Science (Math Physics and Engineering)
    • Married his high school sweetheart, Harriet Stumbers, a BHS 1960 graduate.
    • Successful Business Manager, District Manager for the Friendly Ice Cream Company./ For the Training Program/ First District Manager for the NYC Area.
    • Administrative Coordinator for all Friendly Ice Cream Restaurants Operations Departments.  In 24 years grew from 35 stores to 850.
    • He was owner and partner for the chain of Jim Dandy Restaurants for 45 years 

ZIGMUND PABICH

“Ziggy”
Athlete
Class of 1960

Ziggy entered Bulkeley High School in September 1957 after graduating from a small K-8 Polish Catholic school in Hartford.  His freshman year was quite an adjustment, coming from a school run by Felician Nuns with no organized sports program to the Bulkeley High School environment.

After a year, Ziggy decided to join the Bulkeley High School track team.  Under the guidance of Coach Karski, he became a contributing Shot Putter whose most significant accomplishment was helping the team win the 1960 City Track championship by scoring points in that event.

As a junior, he joined the football team, learning the game from Coaches Karski and Korisky, as well as from his fellow teammates.  While earning no athletics awards that year, he did receive the Football Scholastic Trophy for the highest grade point average on the team.

As a senior, he became a starting guard and linebacker and played in all games. Twice he was selected game captain.  He was chosen as an outstanding player and received the Babe Allen Trophy for his performance in the New Britain High Thanksgiving Day Game. Ziggy credits his accomplishments to his coaches and teammates.

Ziggy attended Trinity College and lettered in football for all four years.  He lettered in track his first three years and placed 4th in the Small College New England Championships in the shot put event.

Ziggy graduated from Trinity in 1964 with a BS degree in interdepartmental sciences (math, physics, and engineering).

ALPHONSE P. PAJONAS

“Al”
Athlete
Class of 1938

While at Bulkeley High School, Al was a standout athlete in 3 sports.  He played 2nd base on the varsity baseball team for three years.  A prolific scorer, Al was best known for his set shot on the basketball team.  He also quarterbacked for the football team.  Following high school, he went on to an exciting and exemplary career at Northeastern University.

Al was athletic director and coach at Plattsburgh’s Mount Assumption Institute from 1948 to 1973. Pajonas, a 1942 graduate of Northeastern, was considered one of the best collegiate shortstops of his day.  He also starred in basketball for the Huskies.  He was inducted into the Northeastern University Athletic Hall of Fame on October 29, 1993.

A .360 batter over a 3-year varsity career, Al went on to sign a professional contract with the New York Yankees in the summer of 1942.  The Boston Red Sox also showed considerable interest in Pajonas.  “I had worked out with the Sox my senior year,” Pajonas recalled.  “I didn’t have my own glove or spikes, and it was tough with (Jimmie) Foxx and (Ted) Williams and Doc Kramer deliberately hitting grounders right at me.”  He was assigned to the Yankees’ Binghamton affiliate, but was drafted into the U.S. Army in 1942 and spent the next four years in London and Paris with the Special Services. 

After the war, Pajonas reported to the Yankees’ Class AAA farm club in Kansas City, where he roomed with Ralph Houk, who would later manage the Yankees, Boston Red Sox, and Detroit Tigers.

He eventually left the game and began his teaching and coaching career at MAI in 1948.  Pajonas coached football, basketball, and baseball at the Mount, winning more than 100 games in each.  His football teams won 5 championships.  Pajonas also taught English, economics, physical education, geography, and history at MAI.  He retired to Sarasota, Florida, in 1972.

Career Highlights:

    • Famous for wildest scholastic basketball game ever against Hartford High School.   BHS was victorious 25-24, January 1938

    • .360 Batting Average over a three-year varsity career

    • Played 2nd base for Babe Allen’s baseball team

    • Finished his professional baseball efforts with the Mid Atlantic League in Augusta, Georgia

    • Signed minor league contract with the Yankees, also worked out with the Boston Red Sox

    • Inducted into the Northeastern University Hall of Fame, 1993.

Career Highlights:
    • Female Athlete of the Year – 1976

    • 11 Varsity Letters

    • Softball – One year

    • Volleyball – Three years (Co-Captain – 1976)

    • Basketball – Three years (Co-Captain – 1976)

    • Tennis – Three years (Co-Captain – 1976)

    • Cheerleading – Three years (Co-Captain – 1974)

    • CIAC Class LL State Qualifier – Tennis (1975 & 1976)

    • Member, 1976 Volleyball team ranked 10th in CT – Reached CIAC Class LL State Quarterfinals

    • Coached Girls’ Varsity Volleyball at the American School for the Deaf (ASD), West Hartford for eleven years – Eastern Schools for the Deaf Athletic Association (ESDAA) Champions (1988), which includes the states of DE, MD, WV, OH, PA, NJ, NY, CT, RI, MA and ME. 

    • Coached Double Dutch at the American School for the Deaf (ASD), West Hartford for two years

    • Graduate of Central Connecticut State University (BA) and St. Joseph University (MA)

CINDY A. PALUCH

“Cindy”
Athlete
Class of 1976

Cindy was a four-sport athlete at Bulkeley High School – volleyball, basketball, tennis, and cheerleading.  She cheered for football while playing volleyball and cheered for boys’ basketball while playing girls’ basketball.  Cindy was the first four-sport letter winner at Bulkeley High School within one single school year.  Cindy had to fight for the right to be on the cheerleading squad along with playing volleyball and girls’ basketball.  Some did not consider cheerleading a sport, but the girls received varsity letters as it required daily early morning hours of practice each week, participating in competitions and cheering for varsity level sports teams.  Freshman year, Cindy played softball for BHS Hall of Fame Coach, Billie Duval. Cindy also played extramural badminton and took second place in Varsity Doubles. Cindy was undefeated in doubles against the BHS boys’ tennis team during her and the teams’ first year of competition.

Coach Deb Horrigan reflects on Cindy’s attributes, “Cindy was the kind of athlete coaches dream of.  She was athletic, bright, enthusiastic, talented, and behind that disarming smile lived a fierce competitor. The early 70’s marked the infancy of girls’ and women’s sports post-Title IX, but you would not have known that to see the determination and desire to learn and compete from Cindy and her teammates. It was a pleasure and an honor to coach such a deserving and classy Best Female Athlete!”

Cindy was selected as the Female Athlete of the Year in 1976. She was an all-around athlete, a leader on and off the court, and a team player. 

Academics were also very important to Cindy.  She was a member of the National Honor Society, 32 Club, Junior Class Vice President, and Yearbook Co-Editor, along with belonging to numerous other BHS organizations and clubs.

After Cindy graduated from college, she worked at the American School for the Deaf (ASD), West Hartford, for 38 years.  She received numerous accolades and awards during her tenure.  She coached the girls’ volleyball team to the ESDAA championship in 1988.   

JONATHAN PEREZ

Athlete
Class of 2010

“Before I graduate, they’re going to know me by name. They’re going to recognize me. I’m going to do something crazy. They’ll know.” 

This is what Jonathan Perez told a friend when they began their Bulkeley High School careers.  He never thought that “something crazy” would be diving.

 

In March 2009, Jonathan won the Class L diving championship scoring 37 points by executing an inward double dive—a dive requiring two full somersaults and a feet-first finish after a backward start.  Only 5 of the 24 other competitors completed a dive as difficult.

In March 2010, Jonathan Perez won the Class L diving championship at Yale.  The previous week, he set a school recording scoring 259.25 points in a meet against Manchester High School.  The last school record was a score of 252.1 set in 1993. 

Jonathan says that it was hard work and determination that made him a state champion and record holder at BHS.  At times, he says it got tough, but he never gave up.  Jonathan credits his team with never allowing him to quit and helping him to achieve his goals.  He credits Juan Dominguez, BHS swimming coach, and Pedro Vega, BHS diving coach, with keeping him focused in school, diving, and in life. 

Career Highlights:

    • Class L Diving Champion, 2008-2010

    • Undefeated Seasons through State Finals, 2008-2010

    • All-State 2008-2010

    • All Courant Team 2008-2010

    • CCC South Conference Champion 2007-2010

    • Current School Record Holder for 11 dives

    • Qualified for State Championships, Swimming & Diving 2008-2010

    • 4-year Varsity Letter, Swimming & Diving

    • Bulkeley Athlete of the Year, 2009-2010

    • 2-year Varsity Letter, Volleyball, 2008-2010

    • Most Improved Player, Volleyball, 2008-2009

    • Varsity Letter, Outdoor Track & Field, 2006-2007

Career Highlights:
    • 1960-1964, 4 Varsity Letters, Football

    • All-City Team Football, 1964

    • CDC Second Team, 1964

    • Nutmeg Bowl, April 12, 1964

    • 1961-1963, 3 Varsity Letters, Baseball

    • Captain, 1964 Baseball Team

    • All-City Baseball Team, 1963 & 1964

    • Freshman Football, Springfield College

    • Co-Captain, Springfield College Freshman Football Team

    • Marine Corps 1967 – 1970

GEORGE P. ROSLONEK

“Geo”
Athlete
Class of 1964

During his Bulkeley High School athletic career from 1960-1964, George Roslonek was a two-sport athlete earning four varsity letters in football and three varsity letters in baseball. 

George was a member of the All-City Football team in 1964, a member of the CDC second team in 1964, and the Nutmeg Bowl in 1964. 

He carried the honor of Captain of the 1964 BHS baseball team. George earned a spot on the All-City Baseball Team in 1963 and 1964.

George’s athletic career extended into his college years where he was a member and co-captain of the freshman football team at Springfield College.  It is said Hall of Fame coaches develop Hall of Fame players.  George played for four Hall of Fame coaches:

    • Football – Ed Korisky and Felix Karsky
    • Baseball – Babe Allen and Pete Kokinis. 

George served in the United States Marine Corps from 1967 to 1970. 

MICHAEL SCRICCA

Athlete
Class of 1969

Mike attended Bulkeley High School from September 1965 to June, 1969.  He was a prominent force on the Cross Country and Track teams and helped lead the 1968 Cross Country team to both City and Greater Hartford titles.  Mike was co-captain of the cross country team in 1969 and earned two letters in 1968 and 1969.

In track, he placed first in the 2-mile event five times in dual meet competitions in 1968.  He placed first in 4 meetings running the mile or 2-mile event in 1969.  Mike earned two letters in track in 1968 and 1969.  He set a Bulkeley High School record of 9:51.5 in the 2-mile event against Norwich Free Academy in his senior year.

Mike attended Hartwick College in Oneonta, New York from 1969-1973, where he continued to run cross country and track.  He lettered in Cross Country all four years, was tri-captain of the cross country team for three years, and was elected to the All-Upstate New York State, Cross Country First team in 1970.

In track, he also lettered all four years, was a captain in 1973, and was leading team point scorer in 1973 with 73 points running the 2 miles, the mile, and the half-mile.  Mike set the school record for the outdoor mile (still stands) in 1973 at 4:19.0 and set the school record for the half-mile in 1973 at 1:58.2.  He was awarded the Senior Athlete Scholarship Award in 1983.

Career Highlights:

    • Cross Country Co-Captain, 1969

    • Named to the CDC All-Star Runners team, 1968

    • Selected Athlete of the Month by “The Torch”, December, 1968

    • Set Bulkeley High School record in 2 mile, 9:51.5

    • Cross Country Tri-Captain, Hartwick College, 1970-1972

    • Elected All-Upstate New York State, Cross Country First Team, 1970

    • Track team Captain, Hartwick College, 1973

    • Set Hartwick College record, outdoor mile, 1973

    • Set Hartwick College record, ½ mile, 1973

    • Awarded Senior Athlete Scholarship Award, 1973

    • Leading team point scorer, 1973, Hartwick College, 2 mile, 1 mile, ½ mile

Career Highlights:
    • 1967 All-City Football Team

    • 1967 All CDC Football Team

    • Football Co-Captain

    • 5 Varsity Letters

    • Honorable Mention, All CDC Basketball Team

    • Marine Corps Veteran

    • Vietnam Veteran

JEFFREY ZIRUK

Athlete
Class of 1968

Jeff grew up in Hartford and was a 1968 graduate of Bulkeley High School.  Jeff was a person who was always upbeat and had a smile on his face.

Jeff played two years of Varsity football alongside Bulkeley High School Hall of Famer, Jim Cataldi, in the 1966-1967 season.

Jeff was the leading receiver on the football team with most yardage.  Jeff was selected to the All-City Football Team and the All CDC Team in 1967.

In 1967, Jeff was co-captain of the Bulkeley High School football team.  Going into the Bulkeley game, Weaver had not allowed a point all season.  Weaver was the number 1 team in the State of Connecticut that year.  Jeff scored the only two touchdowns allowed by Weaver High School all season.

Jeff played for Hall of Fame Football Coach, Felix Karsky. Jeff also played three years of Varsity basketball under Hall of Fame Coach Lou Bazzano. He was the leading free-throw shooter on the basketball team. He earned a total of 5 Varsity letters and made Honorable Mention on the All CDC Basketball team. 

After high school, Jeff served two years in the Marine Corps and was a Vietnam veteran.  He played basketball for Hartford Community College after serving his country.  He earned a B.A. Degree from CCSU and was the successful co-owner of Color-Lith Graphics in West Hartford for 20 years.