Tonight, before Staples High School’s last home game of the season, the Wreckers will honor the 1975 state championship football team. It’s the only undefeated squad in the program’s history.
More than a dozen former players from that legendary team will return, from far and wide. They’ve done plenty since then, in a variety of places and ways.
But today is Veterans Day. So it’s an appropriate time to note the accomplishments of one team member.
Jeff Hill will be there in spirit only. He’s got a veterans’ event in Texas. As regional vice president of the USO, that’s his priority.
His military record is impressive. After graduating from Staples in 1978, Jeff served the Navy as a Special Operations deep-sea diver. He traveled the world as commanding officer of the USS Grasp.
With the USO, he designed and built over 50 USO locations around the country. He’s a co-creator of Warrior Games — the annual Paralympic event hosted for wounded, ill and injured warriors.
He also created Warrior Week/Patriotic Festival. It provides outdoor recreational activities for 600 wounded, ill and injured veterans, and major entertainment for over 100,000 civilians.
After Hurricane Katrina, he helped establish a USO mobile canteen program.
So it’s fitting that — in addition to honoring the ’75 champs tonight — the football community is collecting donations for the USO.
Staples’ opponent tonight is Darien. The Blue Wave is undefeated.
Inspired by the 1975 team, the Staples Wreckers will no doubt fight like warriors.