STRATFORD–The Stratford Old Timers Athletic Association will honor a group of seven at its 54th Annual Golden Crown Awards Dinner on Wednesday, Nov. 13, at 7 p.m., at the Oronoque Country Club.
One of those being honored will be Ed Rooney, one of three being awarded the SOAA Golden Crown Award.
Rooney was born and raised in the Lordship section of Stratford, one of Julia and William Rooney’s seven children.
While lettering in four sports at Stratford High School, before graduating in 1974, Ed’s greatest accomplishments came on the gridiron where he was a three-year starter, two-time co-captain, two-time All-MBIAC selection and a 1973 New Haven Register All-State selection as a fullback/linebacker for legendary coach Pat Caseria.
The Red Devils lost only two games and tied one during that three-year period which included an undefeated junior season with an MBIAC championship.
That was followed by an outstanding senior season, after which he capped his high school football career by playing for the victorious West team against the East in the annual Nutmeg Bowl at Kennedy Stadium in Bridgeport that featured the state’s best players.
Ed then played one year at Mattatuck Community College and was inducted into the SHS Athletic Hall of Fame in 2002.
Rooney was a member of coach Dan Banks’ track and field team, throwing the shotput his junior and senior seasons while playing baseball his sophomore season as a catcher for coach Bud Russell and then for Bob Newall’s swimming team his junior season.
Rooney has put his playing days in football to good use as a member of the Fairfield County Football Officials Association for the last 30 years, working mainly in the FCIAC and SWC.
He has the distinction of working a number of CIAC state championship games and touts being able to work with his crew of Neil Dinihanian, Tim Morrissey and Angelo Lucifora, all fellow Stratford residents.
Ed graduated from Our Lady of Peace parochial school and got an early start in Pop Warner football with the Lordship Bombers coached by George Webb before moving up to the Stratford Jets, who earned Fairfield County honors under coach Frank Giannini.
Ed worked at United Parcel Service in Stratford for 22 years before becoming a union official in 1998 with the Teamsters, first as a business agent, then Vice President, and currently the Principal Officer of Teamsters Local 191 out of Bridgeport.
Ed and his wife of 43 years, Linda, live in Stratford and they have six children: Collin, Brendan, Maggie, Shane, Kevin, and Riann along with seven grandchildren: Shae, Rooney, Maisie, William, Edwin, Linnie Jean, and Jack.
The event is officially sold out and no further ticket sales will occur.
Also being honored are: Patti Fernandez and Ed Rooney, who will also receive Golden Crown Athletic Achievement Awards.
Special recognition will also be accorded to Tish Morrissey (Micki Stratton Award), Ray Bastarache (Alvin “Bud” Russell Award), Mike LaPia (Jack Geary Award), and Bill O’Brien (Tim Ramik Award).