When the 1949 school year rolled around at Del Norte High School, two new athletes joined the Warrior fold, Lee and Bob Templeton.
Lee was a freshman that much has been written about, as he became an all-league performer in football, basketball and baseball and was recently inducted into the Del Norte High School Hall of Fame.
Bob Templeton, Lee’s older brother, was a junior and was also an excellent athlete, competing in football and basketball, but football was where he was a real standout.
I well remember in our junior year when Bob put on the football gear and came out to practice for the first time.
He showed right away that he was going to be a welcome addition to the team. He was a running back with fair speed and a lot of power — not fun to tackle.
My favorite memory of Bob was in the final game of the 1950 football season. This was the last game of his senior year, and we were playing the Arcata Tigers at home.
The Warriors were able to come from behind and defeat Arcata for the first time in 20 years, as a result of Bob’s outstanding play he was awarded the game ball.
It is interesting, as I look back, that the football was white. Night games at that time were played with white footballs.
A few years ago, Bob gave the ball to me so that I could use it to demonstrate a little Warrior history.
I have had the privilege of using this ball in class demonstrations while working as a substitute teacher at the high school.
The ball, even though it is over 60 years old, still holds its air and students were able to play catch with it.
I really have been thankful to Bob for sharing this special piece of Warrior football history with me so I can share it with current Del Norte students. Thank you, Bob.
Bob is now retired, is in good health and lives in the Portland area. When I recently talked to Bob, he said he still bleeds Warrior blood.
Dick Trone writes on his reflections and the history of Del Norte High Warrior sports. Trone, who played football for the Warriors and graduated in 1951, had an illustrious career on the gridiron at Humboldt State University. Trone was football head coach at Del Norte High for a number of years before retiring.