NAUGATUCK — The Naugatuck Hall of Fame inducted its 45th class Oct. 15 before the largest crowd in recent memory.
Close to 500 people gathered at the Continental Room as the hall ushered in six new members: Bill Hicock, Henry Lee, Chris Martin, Alison Rossi, Scott Robinson and Fred Scheithe.
The theme among the inductees when they took the podium was to thank the mothers in their lives.
Hicock, who never lost a baseball game in four years at Naugatuck High and won two state championships, praised his mother and Jim Hankey’s mother as the only two moms that never missed a game during the Naugatuck’s historic 64-game win streak.
Hicock then led the oversized crowd in singing Happy Birthday to all those who were celebrating a birthday. That set the tone for a festive evening filled with well wishes and heartfelt congratulations.
Rossi, a star in volleyball, basketball and softball from 1999-2003, gave an inspiring speech on core values. She said she got loyalty from the Rossi family, confidence from Ron Plasky, grit from every coach she’s had and finished it off with the strength she got from her mother.
Lee, who earned All-NVL and All-State honors on the baseball diamond, thanked his in-laws and his wife before mentioning his mother as his biggest fan.
Martin, a two-time state champion in the 100 breaststroke and the 200 individual medley, spoke about his rich family history in Naugatuck that dates back to the 1900s.
Hicock, Lee, Martin and Rossi were inducted into the hall for their accolades between the lines. For Robinson and Scheithe, their contributions came on the sidelines as coaches.
Robinson has coached the youth of Naugatuck through the Naugatuck YMCA’s Little Pal Basketball for over three decades. He also coaches for Peter J. Foley Little League.
“I’m sure I got more out of it than I gave to the kids,” Robinson said.
Robinson reminisced about playing against his brother, Dale, for the league championship as coaches and his mother was torn as to who to root for.
“Mom I know you are watching this from the best seat in the house,” Robinson said.
Scheithe gave the crowd a glimpse of what his life has been being a coach for over 40 years.
“C is for courage, O is for opportunity, A is for attitude, C is for confidence and H is for heart,” the longtime coach said. “These are the things I’ve tried to instill into every athlete I ever coached to prepare them for the toughest game they will ever face, life.”