November 17th, 2014

Hyland's Heroes: Dave Frankrone

Sarah Newell

CSN Staff Writer


Hyland's Heroes: Dave Frankrone
Dave Frankrone / photo provided by Frankrone

The following feature is a part of a bi-weekly series, sponsored by Hyland Insurance. "Hyland's Heroes" is a series of profiles that spotlight Louisville area Catholic volunteers, coaches and administrators who assist athletic programs and teams, and help promote excellence in all aspects of sports.

Know someone that you think should be featured as the next "Hyland's Hero”? Send your recommendation to editor@catholicsportsnet.com.

If you mingle around Holy Cross often, chances are you know Dave Frankrone. Frankrone can often be found working in the concession stands during Holy Cross athletic events or seen coaching the Holy Cross softball team. 

But Frankrone got his start at the now defunct Holy Rosary Academy where he was a volunteer from 1977 to 1994 and coached the softball team from 1994-2000. He moved on to Holy Cross when Holy Rosary shut down in 2000.

Frankrone attended St. Stephen Martyr Grade School where he played football and baseball. He then went onto attend St. Xavier. After high school, he attended Murray State University but suffered a career ending injury playing club baseball and returned home to attend Jefferson Community College.

When and how did you get your start with Holy Cross High School?

After spending 17 years at as the scorekeeper/gatekeeper for Holy Rosary Academy, I took over the job as head softball Coach at HRA from 1994 until 2000 when the school was closing.

Holy Rosary was my second home and family. I wanted to stay involved in both coaching and continue to volunteer. I knew the head softball coach at Holy Cross (Jerry Hilpp) at the time and I asked him if they were looking for any help with softball. After talking to Stan Hardin, who was the AD at the time, I was hired on as an asst. softball coach. The ball just started rolling from there.

Who asked you to contribute or what got you involved?

Nobody really, I just wanted to help out anywhere. I would ask if they needed any help working at fund raisers or cutting grass on some of the sports fields.

What sports did you volunteer to help and for how long?                                                 

Believe it or not I got my first taste of coaching at Germantown Little League when I was 14 years old. My coach in the 13-15 year old division was Mr. Paul Clayton. He was moving down to coach the six to eight year old team and asked me if I wanted to help him.

I was 14 years old, what did I know about coaching? Coach Clayton really got me interested. Then Father James Murphy kept me going by helping him at St .Stephen Martyr. I then coached and did volunteer work at the grade school level and the intermediate level thru the CSAA at Resurrection - Holy Family - Guardian Angels – St. Rita and St. Elizabeth. Thru all the years since 1966 I have met a lot of great people along the way that have become great friends.

What's the connection with your faith and giving your time to student athletes?

Staying active and being able to work with our youth is very rewarding because you get to see the students grow and mature not only on the playing field but especially in the classroom. You let them know that you care.  The main man upstairs gave me the ability to work with our youth and share my time so I did not plan on letting him or them down.

Who was the most influential person on your volunteer career? Why?

The most influential person would have to be my uncle (Father Leo Frankrone). He passed away in 1988. He told me two things that has stuck with me thru-out my life. No. 1 is that giving of your time to help others is easy and No. 2 is to be the best that you can be at whatever you do, whether it’s at work - school or on the playing field. By that he meant if you are a C student be the best C student -
athlete or person that you can be. He said remember that we are all not made the same. Not everybody is able to give a 100%. If all you have to give is 75% then give the best 75% that you can and no one can
fault you for your effort.

What are your major themes/principles as a volunteer?

As a coach and volunteer, my job is to make it enjoyable for our students and help them understand that there will be failures in life and lessons to learn. I like to be supportive of all the students no matter what they are involved in and try to be helpful to all the parents who also donate their time.

To myself – let them know that you care because "they don't care how much you know, until they know how much you care." To our students "you can either find a way or you can find an excuse, but you can't do both."

What does your role at Holy Cross High School bring to you or your family?

Holy Cross is my family and my second home. The togetherness and friendship that we all share for each other is very special.

What are the fondest experiences or memories you have of your volunteer time?

The joy and the good feeling I get from just being able to help out. Memories are seeing the smiles on our students faces whether it is from a struggling athlete, who just made a basket, got a base hit or finished high in a big race or even better a smile from a student who just aced a big test. The definition of the word thrill explains it all – to affect or become affected emotionally as if by something that pierces; to shiver, throb or tingle with excitement.

 

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