Hall of Fame Inductees

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Charles H. Cuno (Benefactors)

1888 – 1978

It is singularly appropriate that the first of many automotive products manufactured by Charles Cuno was the self-starter, for he was a self-starter in his own right. Inventive, enterprising, public-spirited, he turned a small manufacturing business into a large corporation. He made the Cuno name a symbol of excellence throughout the industrial world by his accomplishments in the development of industrial filters. His industrial expertise played a major role in the United States' efforts during World War II.

From the profits of his business, he endowed the Cuno Foundation in 1948 and, through it, distributed large sums of money for many worthy causes. Among these were Meriden Boys' Club, Curtis Home, Meriden-Wallingford Hospital, YMCA, United Way, and the education of deserving students through scholarship grants.

From a modest beginning, equipped only with a conscientious dedication to achievement, encouraged and guided by an exceptional mother, and disciplined and motivated by the example of a hard-working father who combined the vision of tomorrow with the sweat and toil of today's effort, he was indeed an example of the American Dream come true.

Edwin O. Gerschefski (Art)

1909 – 1992

Composer of symphonies, concertos, preludes, suites, overtures. and marches, Edwin Otto Gerschefski was born in Meriden in 1909. He obtained his Bachelor of Music and Bachelor of Philosophy degrees from Yale University and earned the first Charles Ditson Fellowship for music study abroad.

In 1940 he joined Converse College at Spartanburg, South Carolina, as Associate Professor of Music and became Dean of the School of Music in 1945. He became the University of Georgia's Music Department head in 1960, a post he retained until 1972, when he gave up administrative duties. During that time, he wrote thirty-four new works and revised earlier compositions. In 1961 his compositions won the Arnold Bax Society of England Gold Medal.

He has presented one hundred concerts with the University of Georgia Trio and lectured at a number of colleges and universities, as well authored the book entitled Anyone Can Compose. He received the 1968 citation of the Yale University School of Music Alumni Association for distinguished service to art and music and was selected in 1969 as a National Honorary Member of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia Fraternity. He was cited by then-Governor Jimmy carter in 1973 for his career as composer, performer, and music educator.

Russell "Hunky" Doran (Sports)

1902 – 1982

Born and raised in Meriden, Russell "Hunky" Doran was a man of large stature and gentle disposition.

A member of the championship Meriden High School team in 1919, he went on to play varsity football at the Perkiomen School (Pennsburg, PA), and then on an athletic scholarship to Gettysburg College where he earned four varsity letters.

In 1925 "Hunky" returned to Meriden to begin an illustrious teaching and coaching career. After serving as an assistant coach at Wesleyan for a year, he became line coach at Meriden High School under the legendary Frank Barnikow. Over the next twenty-five years (1926-1950), with enthusiasm and dedication, he continued to coach and inspire all with whom he came in contact.

In recent years his contribution to sports has been recognized by both Perkiomen School and Gettysburg College. Perkiomen inducted him into its Hall of Athletic Honor on May 16, 1981 citing "his outstanding contribution to the athletic program while at Perkiomen. Posthumously on October 29, 1982, Gettysburg named him to its Hall of Athletic Honor noting in its citation "that he played almost 60 minutes of every game in his four year career, establishing himself as an outstanding college lineman."