Warrior Memories: Dee Spann: Early Warrior standout

By Dick Trone August 07, 2009 11:59 am
In the very early history of Del Norte High Warrior athletics Dee Spann put his mark on three sports. He was a very talented athlete that excelled in football, basketball and baseball. Dee was a 1930 Del Norte high School graduate and played his entire Warrior career under the watchful eye of coach Ed Frazer.

When the 1928 football team pulled the big upset over Ferndale in the season opener Dee was one of the starting running backs that helped the Warriors to this big win.

In basketball, Dee made the varsity as a freshman. He was regularly one of the team’s top scorers. During his sophomore, junior and senior years he was named to the all-league first team. During his junior and senior years he was named captain of the All League Team.

During his senior year he was a big part of the Warriors finishing the 1930 season undefeated. This undefeated record got  Del Norte scheduled to play at home against a powerful team from Ukiah for the Northern California Championship. An account of the game read that, led by guard Dee Spann, the Warriors were able to tie the score at 15-15 midway through the third quarter, but from that point on it was all Ukiah. The final score was 51-20.

Dee was also an outstanding baseball player, manning the left field position for the Warriors during his entire career. Besides being an excellent defensive player, he was also a good hitter. Often he led the team in the hit department. After finishing his high school career he played several seasons for the local semi-pro teams.

After graduation Dee did a tour of duty in the military. After the service he worked on our local docks, first as a longshoreman loading lumber onto ships in the harbor. He also owned a commercial fishing boat and was a commercial fisherman for many years.

Dee married Arlene Howe and they had four children, two boys Jim and Bill, and two girls Darlene and Patti. Their contributions to our community through the years were many. They were involved in civic activities through their entire lives and are fondly remembered for all that they did to make Crescent City such a great place to live.

Dick Trone writes on his reflections and the history of Del Norte High Warrior sports. Trone, who played football for the Warriors, had an illustrious  career on the gridiron at Humboldt State University. Trone was head football coach at Del Norte High for a number of years before retiring.