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Former Simsbury Coach to be Inducted into National Wrestling Hall of Fame

Frank Chaves, who coached at Simsbury High for 28 years, will be honored this April

Submitted by the National Wrestling Hall of Fame, Conn. Chapter

Six outstanding individuals from the Connecticut wrestling community have been selected for induction into the National Wrestling Hall of Fame.

The Connecticut chapter of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame will hold an induction dinner on Saturday, April 20, 2013 at MGM Grand Hotel at Foxwoods Resort Casino to honor these men for their contribution to the sport of wrestling and our communities. The six men to be honored are:

  • John Chacho, the former coach at Staples High in Westport and former official
  • Frank Chaves, the former coach at Simsbury High and a current official
  • Ken Destefanis, the former coach at Central Connecticut State University and current youth wrestling club coach
  • Staff Sergeant Joseph Kapacziewski, a former wrestler at Bristol Eastern High, who is currently an Army Ranger. He has been on multiple deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan.
  • Bernard Nasser, a long-time official and former coach at Fitch High in Groton
  • Ricky Shook, the coach at Danbury High School

Chacho, Chaves, Destefanis, Nasser and Shook will receive a Lifetime Achievement award for coaches, officials, media or contributors with at least 20 years of service. Kapacziewski is being honored with a Medal of Courage, an award for a wrestler or former wrestler who has overcome insurmountable challenges.

About Frank Chaves

Chaves took over the wrestling program at Simsbury High in 1978 and coached the Trojans for 28 years. Under Chaves' leadership, Simsbury won 12 CCC West championships, two Class L titles (1995, 1997) and a Class LL championship (1992) beating Danbury by three points. Simsbury had 24 winning seasons in 28 years and finished in the top five of the Class L and Class LL tournaments 16 times. Twelve wrestlers coached by Chaves won State Open championships and two earned New England titles. Chaves was named as the wrestling coach of the year in 2002 by the Connecticut High School Coaches Association. He was inducted into the New England Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2004. After retiring from coaching following the 2006, Frank has become an official. He retired from teaching physical education at Simsbury in 2010.

Each award recipient will be permanently recognized in the National Wrestling Hall of Fame (Stillwater, Oklahoma) with an embossed name plaque, and each receives a plaque and jacket to commemorate the very special occasion. These six will join 29 other inductees from Connecticut in the National Wrestling Hall of Fame.

Tickets for the banquet are on sale now for $85 each and are available online through cwhof.ticketleap.com

Learn more about the Connecticut Chapter of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame, the 2013 inductees and the 2013 induction dinner by going to its website at ctwrestling7.homestead.com/halloffame.html

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