As a teenager, Fredonia native Michael Heary was given a piece of paper with a quotation written on it by his youngest sister, Michele. It read: "When you do it better, you get to be the leader." Let's just say, even years later, there have been few basketball players in Chautauqua County history who have done it better than Heary did during his high school and college days.
From Fredonia to Annapolis, Maryland, from Fredonia High School to the U.S. Naval Academy, Heary placed an indelible mark on the teams he led and the schools that had their names emblazoned across the front of his jerseys.
Heary's road to the Chautauqua Sports Hall of Fame began as a youngster when he learned the game from his late father, Tom, who had played at Canisius College. At school, in the driveway at home or even in mother Rita's kitchen, Heary always seemed to have a basketball in his hands.