Grid Iron dinner next Thursday night 6:30

Posted Tuesday, September 02, 2008 by Michael O'Donnell


3rd Annual Archbishop Stepinac High School Grid Iron Club Dinner to Be Held Sept. 11


Former Stepinac Football Player & Coach Joseph Riverso

Who Perished in 9/11Attacks Among 2008 Inductees



White Plains, NY  (September 2008)  Eight former ‘star’ football players who played on the Archbishop Stepinac High School’s Crusaders team over the past 55 years will be inducted into the school’s Grid Iron Club at the third annual dinner to be held at 6:30 PM, September 11 at the Knights of Columbus, 131 North Broadway, White Plains.


A poignant moment of this year’s ceremony— which coincides with the seventh anniversary of 9/11— will be the induction of Joseph R. Riverso, the former Stepinac Crusaders football player and coach who perished in the terrorist attack while working at the World Trade Center. 


The family and friends of Joe Riverso— who will be among the approximate 200 guests at the dinner— established the Joseph R. Riverso Memorial Foundation that awards scholarships to the school’s athletes who exemplify his ideals of sportsmanship, discipline, a commitment to the community and attitude.


The annual Joe Riverso Night Football Game will be played between the Crusaders who clinched the 2007 Catholic High School Football League Varsity AA championship and Iona Prep at 7 PM, Saturday, Sept. 13. The night game will be played on the Crusaders home field under lights provided by the Riverso family.


The other 2008 inductees who played exceptional football at Stepinac and continued to do so at college are (year designates graduation from Stepinac):


  • Dick Broderick (1953), played on University of Michigan team
  • Paul Hefti (1953), played on Miami University Football team (he also won a Con Ed Athlete award)
  • Steve Buchanan (1970), played on College of the Holy Cross team and Denver Bronco draft choice
  • Ed Chomicki (1977), played on Boston College team (also a Con Ed Scholar Athlete award winner)
  • Craig Miller (1978), played on Fordham University team
  • Frank Boccanfuso (1981), played on Fordham University team
  • Tyler Nugent (2002), played on College of the Holy Cross team (also a Con Ed Scholar Athlete award winner)


The Father Pete Gelsomino Spirit Award will be presented to Skip Morton, the former Head Freshman Coach (years?) for the Crusaders and a Catholic High School Football League official, whose three sons—Adam, Jake and Brent—also played on the Stepinac football team. 


Crusaders Head Coach Mike O’Donnell said: “The Gridiron Dinner has turned out to be a much anticipated fun-filled event by football fans, each year drawing larger crowds. It gives former Crusaders players the opportunity to return and see old friends, reminisce about the great games they played and renew team camaraderie.”  He added: “By attending the Gridiron Dinner, the extended and very proud Crusaders football family including teammates, friends and parents will re-affirm its support for our notable football program, an integral part of Stepinac’s 60-year tradition of building character through sportsmanship and team work.”


The cost of the ticket which includes a cocktail hour and dinner is $80 per person and $750 for a table of 10. For more information or to make a reservation, send an e-mail to Coach O’Donnell at or visit the website,


Founded in 1948, Archbishop Stepinac High School’s mission is to offer young men a highly competitive academic and extracurricular program that will prepare them for college and leadership roles.  The faculty and staff accomplish these objectives by pursuing excellence and creating a supportive, disciplined atmosphere with a strong sense of camaraderie and Christian values that are unique to the Stepinac experience.  For more information on Stepinac High School please visit