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Inductee Profile

Bob Curtis


Bob grew up in the township of Madge near Long Lake. He attended Spooner high school through his sophomore year and then moved to Belvidere, Illinois where he graduated in 1943. Bob was one of the state of Illinois’ premier fastpitch hurlers for Belvidere during the mid to late 1940’s. Among the opponents he faced was the nationally known Aurora Sealmasters. He returned to Rice Lake in 1950 and pitched fastpitch from 1950 through 1967. He accumulated over 350 wins while dominating the Barron County Fastpitch League, the Rice Lake Municipal League and Northwest Wisconsin. He began playing for Sockness Shoe Company and then played for Breunig’s Lager, Manson’s Clothing Store, Grouchy Don’s Café, Mathison Tire, Corner’s Bar and Club 48. Bob simply overpowered hitters with his fast ball and 6’ 5” stature and was an excellent left-handed batter as well, doing as much damage hitting against an opponent as he did pitching. Throwing a softball at an incredible speed came easy for Bob and he thoroughly enjoyed the competition and the camaraderie with all the players. He was a gentleman on and off the field and embodied what entails good sportsmanship. Bob served in the U.S. Army as a military policeman in the South Pacific during WWII. When he returned to Rice Lake in 1950, Bob purchased Lake Area Disposal and was a part owner of the Lake Area Landfill near Sarona until his retirement in 1991. He was instrumental in organizing many northwest chapters of Ducks Unlimited and was a member of the Wisconsin Conservation Congress, Muskies Inc., and the Foundation for North American Wild Sheep. He was also one of the organizers of fastpitch softball in Rice Lake. Curtis Field, a softball diamond at the Tate Park complex was named in his honor in 1983. Bob died in 1992 at the age of 65.

Bob Curtis
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