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In Memoriam:
Maryland Doubles Champion George Doetsch

DOUBLES COMMUNITY MOURNS
LOSS OF OUTSTANDING SPORTSMAN


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Oct 3, 2003, By Rob Dinerman © 2002 SquashTalk

George
L. Doetsch Sr., a member of the Maryland State Squash Racquets Association
(MSSRA) Hall of Fame and the winner of 15 Maryland State doubles titles
as well as the 1963 U. S. Senior (45-and-over) championship with partner
Bill Lamble, died September 23rd of an apparent heart attack at Oak Crest
Village in Parkland, MD, where he had lived for the past eight years.

The former
radio executive at WBAL was an avid squash player from 1939, when at age
24 he took up the game after having been an outstanding college swimmer
and Navy swimming instructor at the Bainbridge Naval Training Center during
World War II, to 1983, when he finally stopped playing at age 68, two
years after his retirement after an 18-year career selling advertising
space at
WBAL. The Baltimore native and life-long resident was 88 years old, and
he is survived by his wife Doris, to whom he was married for 64 years,
their son, George L. Doetsch Jr., two grand-children and five great-grandchildren.

A 1933
graduate of City College, where he won medals in swimming, Doetsch started
playing squash on the second floor of the Park Plaza Building at Charles
and Madison Streets in downtown Baltimore on a doubles court used by members
of the nearby (and now defunct) University Club. His impressive size (he
was 6′ 2", which was considered quite tall during that era) and power
(a legacy
of his years as a swimmer) caused him to gravitate to the right wall,
where his skills and steady, tin-free style were an excellent complement
to Lamble’s shot-making and finesse.

Deemed
"arguably the best doubles team ever in Maryland" by Jim Lacy,
who along with his brother Joe were frequent opponents of Doetsch and
Lamble, they were certainly the best Maryland doubles team during the
period from 1949, when they won their first Maryland State Doubles crown,
through 1964, when they won their 15th (in 16 years) and last such title.
In 1962 the USSRA inaugurated a National Senior Doubles event for players
age 45-and-over (which was changed some years later to a 50-and-over),
and Doetsch and Lamble won the second edition of this event in 1963.

Doetsch
and his perennial partner, Baltimore co-denizen and good friend Lamble,
also competed in doubles matches in both England and South Africa in tours
arranged by the Jesters Club during this period. Inducted by the MSSRA
into its Hall Of Fame in 2000, Doetsch also played gold well enough to
have garnered three holes in one over the years, the last of which, at
the Five Farms
Course in Baltimore County, occurred just over a year ago. He had a pilot’s
license and flew Piper Cubs for many years as well. "A giant of a
man and a giant of a gentleman," USSRA CEO Palmer Page noted in praising
Mr. Doetsch’s decades of achievement in and service to squash, and few
aficionados of the game, especially those from Maryland, would dispute
Page’s glowing assessment.

(photos anyone? Please
send to editor@squashtalk.com or to SquashTalk, 409 Massachusetts Ave,
Acton MA 01720.



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