what's new | about the mavericks | administration | calendar | membership | newsletter | records | links | home


Mavericks of the Month - 2001

The following swimmers were selected as "Mavericks of the Month" in 2001. Our first edition of "Maverick of the Month" was in 1998, and 2001 marked the fourth year for this popular newsletter feature.

E. Don McCullough, 85, was born in Columbus, Ohio, in 1915. There were no high school swim programs, so he swam with the Columbus Athletic Club. He competed for Ohio State niv, from 1935-1940, with world record holder, Higgins, and Coach Mike Peppe. His best college swim was 4th in breast, at Nationals. Following graduation, he joined the Coast Guard, engaged in convoy duty. During this time, he married Betty. After the war, Don taught high school phy. ed. and coached for seven years, in Columbus. In 1951, he did circus work and promotion for Cole
Bros. Circus. In 1954, he worked for Bailey Bros. Circus, in an organizational role. Afterwards, he taught phy ed and coached at Emporia State Teachers College, Kansas, and chaired the PE Dept. In 1958, the State Dept. sent him to Iran for two years, as Nat'l Sports Advisor to the Shah. Betty taught school. Don returned to Emporia until 1965. He then spent a year on the road with a circus. In 1966, he moved to Vermillion, SD, as a university professor and chair of the PE Dept. He started their swim team. In the 70's, Don started Masters swimming and is frequently ranked as an All American. He swam the hour swim, and set a Nat relay record with his 85+ teammates. He and Betty still live in Vermillion, SD, shoveling their way through an extremely snowy winter.

Jean Troy, 73, was born in Tarbaro, NC. She was fortunate that a WPA swimming pool was built in her small home town of 5,000, in 1935. As a 9-11 yr. old, she swam every summer. This established her skill in swimming and her love of the water. Troy matriculated at UNC in 1948. The next three years she was the field director of the Girl Scouts in Charlotte, which included the waterfront at summer camp.
In 1951, she married Ed, who worked for DuPont Construction. With a family of three, they moved to Wilmington, DE, in 1960. Troy was the Aquatic Director at the YMCA for thirteen years. With a staff of 25, she found time to set up a mini-team of four and five year olds. Roger Franks, an Olympian from England, introduced her to Masters
swimming when she was 45. As member of the Colonial 1776 team, she made Top Ten. ZGradually, she improved her times, and moved up to All American, with wins in the 50, 100 and 200 free. In 1983, Ed retired and they started a tradition of taking an annual six month vacation in the Bahamas, on their boat. In 2000, with only seven months of training and competing, she had 40 Top Ten times and swam on three National record relay teams. Troy received the Coaches
Award for the Outstanding Performance-Female. Troy says, "I loved the water since I was a child and always found a way to be near the water." She & Ed live in Sun City Center, FL.

Robert Williams, 74, had a unique birthplace, his home in Foxdale, PA. At Greensburg HS, he specialized in track and basketball. During his senior year, he enlisted in the Navy, where he served as a Radioman 3rd Class during WWII. After the war, he enrolled at Slippery Rock Teachers' College, where he majored in Health & Phy Ed. During these years, he competed on their swim and tennis teams. He was the captain of the tennis team when they had their all-time best season, a 10-1 record. Williams graduated at mid year, when teaching jobs were not available. Instead, he worked for the Greensburg YMCA for 10 years. In 38 years, he also worked at Cumberland, MD; Newark & Patterson, NJ. He married in 1949 and has four sons, a stepson and daughter and six grandchildren. As a 55 year old, Williams retired while in Dayton, OH, and began participating in Sr Games, in track, tennis and swimming. He has competed every year since then, winning the Golden Torch Award for the outstanding athlete in each age group. He joined the Mavericks their first year, has received Top Ten and Relay All American awards every year and is a top point getter at local meets. He lives in Port Richey, with Bunni, is pres of their condo ass'n, and successfully invests for them.

Rodney Swanigan, 50, was born in Pracy, CA. He was a multi-athlete in high school, competing in swimming, water polo and wrestling. After graduation, he coached in Stockton, CA, and surfed in the ocean. Swanigan launched his musical career in the 4th grade, with violin and guitar lessons, which he continued through high school. While enrolled in a Jr. College in San Francisco, he played in a Jazz band, and also did the musical arrangements. He stayed in shape with open water swimming. In 1974, he moved to Nashville, TN, where he performed Country and Western music for four years. When asked about his love life said, his eyes shifted from side to side as he whispered, "Dolly Parton and I had a secrecy agreement." Swanigan moved to St. Pete in 1980 and teaches at the Bringe School of Music. He has recorded various rock groups and performed with local bands. One gig was at the Italian Pavilion, with another guitarist. The Hutingers have eaten dinner at the restaurant, while listening to his contemporary musical renditions. Margie even accompanied him on the bongo drums for one of his songs. He has belonged to Masters, since 1988, and joined the Mavericks in 1999. He swam 100 fly on a Top Ten, 2nd place medley relay. In 1992, he organized a Water Polo team, which played in a FL league for many tears. "Elvis" celebrated his 50th birthday in paradise. That's right, paradise. Karen, his wife, planned this surprise for two years. She told him a little white lie, and said they were visiting friends in Seattle. At the Los Angeles airport, she asked him where he thought they were going. Lifting his hands overhead, eyes wide open, he shouted, "Hawaii?" That's right, Hawaii. Ten glorious days in a bed and breakfast on the North Shore of Oahu, lounging in
the sunshine and hanging 10 in the barrel. Swanigan, and his wife, Karen, live in St. Pete.


go to 2002 | back to 2000 | back to history | back to newsletter

what's new | about the mavericks | administration | calendar | membership | newsletter | records | links | home