The Post-Journal

Long-Awaited Reunion

The 1964 Jamestown football team that finished the season with a perfect 8-0 record will be celebrating its 50th reunion next year.

However, former Red Raider Jim Rissel had a 50th reunion this summer.

Terry Ransbury was the coach of that 1964 team, but by then Rissel had graduated. His last season playing for the Red Raiders on the line was in 1963 and he hadn't seen his former coach since then.

Ransbury, who came to JHS after a successful coaching career at Silver Creek, went on to coach at Clarence and the University at Buffalo and then was a film grader and scout for the Buffalo Bills.

Rissel thought he might see Ransbury in 1996 when he was inducted into the Chautauqua Sports Hall of Fame, the same year Rissel's father, Harry, was inducted for his accomplishments in baseball and bowling. However, Ransbury did not attend the induction dinner.

Ransbury has been living in the Carolinas, but Rissel finally caught up with his former coach when they were in the same group when the McDonald's Senior Golf Tour played at Green Meadows Golf Course in North East, Pa., in July.

Rissel noted that Ransbury is still "coaching," even at the age of 84. During the round, Rissel hit a slice and Ransbury pointed out, "Didn't finish your swing."

Ransbury knows something about golf because he's a bit obsessed with it. In his apartment, he upsets his wife by hitting rolled up balls of paper into their kitchen with a pitching wedge.

Ransbury still has memories of his three years coaching at JHS, when he was 0-7-1, 2-6 and then 8-0 in 1964.

In Rissel's senior season of 1963, the Red Raiders lost to Williamsville, 12-6, in the last two minutes and Ransbury said that still bothers him. But he also remembered a big win over Warren that same season.

Things were quite a bit different back then as Rissel discovered looking through some old newspaper clippings. The Jamestown season in 1963 didn't begin until Sept. 21, quite a change from now when high school seasons can begin in August.

For some reason, the Red Raiders, whose colors are Red and Green, wore yellow jerseys.

It was also noted in 1963 that Jamestown might have to consider playing its home games somewhere other than College Stadium because of insufficient seating.

After their reunion round of golf was over, Rissel noted something special. When Ransbury retrieved his valuables bag from his golf bag, in it was the ring he received for being inducted into the Chautauqua Sports Hall Fame and he quickly slipped it on his finger.

The additional financial assistance of the community is critical to the success of the Chautauqua Sports Hall of Fame.
We gratefully acknowledge these individuals and organizations for their generous support.