Joseph LaCava, Jr.

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Joseph LaCava, Jr.
(Football, 1955)
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Football games are won by people who block and tackle better than the people they are playing. It is true today and it has always been true. Our next Hall of Fame inductee blocked and tackled his team to the first undefeated and untied football team in school history: linebacker and center “Capt.” Joe LaCava. Joe played football, basketball, and baseball at DHS from 1951 to 1955. Joe was selected to be captain of the 1954 football team which, as previously mentioned, was the first undefeated and untied team in school history and was ranked 3rd in the AP state poll. Linemen and linebackers who spend their games in the middle of close quarter action do not usually stand out but several Danbury News-Times articles find the name Joe LaCava mentioned prominently and often. A team does not enjoy gridiron success if the middle core of their team is not strong. Joe LaCava anchored the middle on both offense and defense and the proof of his success is in the team record-undefeated and untied. His efforts won him recognition by being the recipient of the Kiwanis Club Award in 1955. After high school Joe attended prep school and played sports at Bridgton Academy in Maine. He went on to the University of Scranton and played JV basketball before joining the army. After his stint in the service he married his high school sweetheart (Mary Ann Young, DHS class of 1955) and started working in the banking industry. He was a father of four and a grandfather of eight children. In addition to being a supportive father and grandfather, Joe coached youth and middle school sports in Newtown for many years and was also an avid golfer and member of the Newtown Country Club. Speaking of golf, Joe’s son, Joe III is the caddy and friend of PGA golfer Fred Couples. His efforts as both an athlete and coach earned him recognition from the Old Timer’s Association in 1996. Unfortunately Joe is no longer with us as he passed away in July of 2009.