Braasch, Vernon (Vern) "Bud"
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Vernon (Vern) "Bud" Braasch passed away February 17, 2013. Vern was born in Norfolk, Nebraska on April 20, 1919, the youngest of six children, born to Hattie Donner Braasch and Herman Braasch. He was preceded in death by all his siblings and his wife of 54 ½ years, Bonnie Braasch. He played football at the University of Nebraska, Nebraska Wayne State Teachers before World War II. He served 5 years in the Air Force, a Physical Training Officer at San Antonio Aviation Cadet Center and was honorably discharged as a captain. He then attended Northern Colorado University and played football for 2 years receiving All Conference and All Rocky Mountain Regions Honors as a tackle. He received a B.A. and his Master's Degree in Physical Education. His first job was at Phoenix Union High School in 1948, coaching freshman football (undefeated), freshman basketball, and junior varsity track. He then went to a brand new West Phoenix High School in 1949. He became head football coach in 1953 and also head wrestling coach in 1954 (the start of high school wrestling). Football Accomplishments: Line Coach 1949-1950. Head Coach 1953-1964: 62 wins, 35 losses and 5 ties. AA State Champs 1956-1957, 1957-1958; City Champs 1955-1956, 1956-1957 and 1956-1958; Phoenix Turkey Day Champs 1958-1959; District Conference Champs 1961-1962 and two all-star wins. Originated B Freshman Pee Wee Football program with aid from Rollie Caldwell and Father Dodd. He received Arizona Coach of the Year Award in 1957. Wrestling Accomplishments: Dual Meets 110 wins, 27 losses and 1 tie; State Champs 1954 (with Tucson High School); Valley Champs 1954; City Champs 1961. Received A.A.U. Coaching Award for high school coach, having the most A.A.U. Wrestling Champions from 1954-1962. Vern then went to a brand new Glendale Community College as Head of the Physical Education Department and Wrestling Coach. His record: 1 Conference Championship; 1 Southwest Zone Championship and 1 Dual Meet Championship. He was inducted into the Arizona Wrestling Hall of Fame in 1976 and the National Wrestling Hall of Fame in 1995. Vern retired in 1985. Private Services to be held. Arrangement by Messinger Indian School, Scottsdale Az.
Published in The Arizona Republic on Feb. 21, 2013