Inductees Front Row: (from left) Henry Lotz, Charles Rosenthal, Marion Duchane.
Second Row: (from left) Earl Barnett, Lloyd Mueller, William Armstrong, George Davis, William Mills, Gene Robards, Robert Sommerfield.
Third Row: (from left) Carl Mundinger, Charles Gilkesson, Glen Seibert, Gordon Fothergill, Hubert Booth, Virgil Aitken, Assistant Coach Clarence Allison, Captain Walt Zander, Coach Harvey Stamper.
Back Row: (from left) John Bauer, William Johnson, Flavel Harris, Fritz Millard, Edgar Mullins, Darrel Peters, Bill Barnett.
EAST PEORIA HIGH SCHOOL began the most successful era in the school's football history in 1935 when it produced its first unbeaten team. Coached by Harvey Stamper, who later would have the football stadium named for him, East Peoria tied Normal Community in its first game and then swept to victory in its last six games, finishing the season with three shutouts. Five members of the team received all-city honors. Fullback Walt Zander was named to the first team, halfback Virgil Aitken to the second team, and ends Tony Antonacci and Bob Sommerfield and tackle Gene Robards rated honorable mention honors.
THE 1935 SEASON
East Peoria 1, Normal Community 0
East Peoria 42, Chillicothe 0
East Peoria 19, El Paso 14
East Peoria 19, Eureka 0
East Peoria 24, Manual Sophs 6
East Peoria 13, Kingman 0
East Peoria 27, Washington 18
Front Row: (from left) Henry Lotz, Charles Rosenthal, Marion Duchane.
Larry Leitner was among the state's elite officials for more than 40 years, officiating high school, college and professional sporting events from 1960 through 2003 and he remains involved in sports by serving on the board of directors for the Pekin Insurance Holiday Tournament, as well as evaluating current officials and moderating IHSA rules clinics.
Among his officiating highlights, Leitner worked more IHSA basketball and football tournament games than any official in the state's history, earning 27 consecutive boys basketball regional assignments. He also worked the IHSA boys basketball state finals in 1973, 1974 and 1976, including the 1976 championship game, and three IHSA football finals, including the first-ever 2A state championship game in 1974. A charter member of the Gateway Conference officiating crew in 1988, Leitner was part of the crew that officiated the 1990 and 1993 NCAA Division I-AA quarterfinals and he served as an associate official for the Big Ten Conference from 1984-88.
Leitner also was called upon to officiate two IESA state championship games, the 1990 National Catholic Basketball finals, three Shriner All-Star football games and the 1980 IBCA All-Star Classic, while also working for two seasons in the Midwest Professional Football League.
Leitner is a member of the Illinois Basketball Coaches Association, Peoria Officials and Bloomington/Normal Officials Halls of Fame.