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ISHOF Service Award

Bob Dillon

2013 ISHOF Service Award


Bob is a retired high school science educator and swim coach from the Jersey Shore. He is a U.S. Navy veteran. Since his retirement in 2007 after 31 years teaching, he has become a “snowbird” and is now able to spend several months in Fort Lauderdale and at the ISHOF, where he volunteers his time to do whatever is needed. He has been affiliated with the ISHOF since 1966, when he came to visit Fort Lauderdale and the ISHOF where he met Buck Dawson, ISHOF’s founder. His high school swim coach from Trenton Central High School, the late Al Neuschaefer, was inducted into the ISHOF in 1967. Bob was later introduced to ISHOF Director Bob Duenkel by the late Dick Steadman, who Dillon knew from the Jersey Shore. He has made a “pilgrimage” every year to ISHOF, both when he was in the Navy, and when teaching, during his Christmas vacations. Since 1989, he has helped Duenkel set up and run Fort Lauderdale’s “Rough Water Ocean Mile Swim”, including buoy placement, finish schute, departure pens, streamers, and tables. He also helps with airport runs, writing and typing and other requests.


Now that he can spend more time in Ft Lauderdale, Bob has been able to assist in a myriad of ways. In addition to helping with the annual ocean mile swim, he assisted in the organization and running of the “Fran Crippin 10K Swim” two years ago; assists in the preparation of the annual Induction Ceremonies, and last year’s inaugural “Aquatic History Symposium”. Bob is an ISHOF member and feels like he is also “quazi staff” when here and enjoys working with the ISHOF staff.


Bob has presented two plaques along with monetary contributions, one in 1996 on behalf of the late Dick Steadman, member of ISHOF and the Olympic Diving Committee, as well as on behalf of a Monmouth County NJ Water Safety icon, the late Howard Rowland, in 1983.


Bob has been involved with aquatics all of his life which has been his avocation. Swimming in high school and at Gettysburg College; an American Red Cross Instructor; member of the Monmouth County A.R.C. Water Safety Committee; swimming official (1974-1982); founder and first coach of his high school swim team (1995); lifeguard; beach club aquatic director and manager; founder and Past President of the Monmouth County Chapter of the United States Lifesaving Association (USLA) for 25 years (now a life member); competition official for the Mid-Atlantic USLA; occasional delegate to the bi-annual national USLA meeting, organizing such a three day meeting in 1991 (Baltimore); organizer and head official of the Monmouth County Lifeguard “tournaments” for over 30 years; past organizer and manager of the Monmouth County Lifeguard Competition Team for the USLA Nationals, which usually places second each year. Bob was awarded the USLA “Sportsmanship Plaque” in 2003. He is still involved with the USLA on all levels, local, regional and national, as well as with the high school swim team.


He was recognized by the “Asbury Park (NJ) Press” (11/28/11) for the paper’s “2000 Millennium Countdown Project”, being selected as one of the fifteen top/legendary lifeguards of the North Jersey Shore Area for his contributions that had made an impact in this profession. He was also recognized by the Monmouth County (NJ) Parks System, for twenty-five years of leadership in the lifeguarding profession. Most recently, the Wall High School (NJ) Swim Team Parents Association, that Bob founded, have named their annual swim team scholarship after him.

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