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Honoring the Past

Inspiring the Future


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Vaughn Shell

2015 WSHF inductee



A 1955 graduate of Sycamore High School, Vaughn Shell excelled in basketball, track and field and especially baseball, going on to play in college and professionally.


After high school, Shell and his brother, Leon, played on a Colorado semi-pro team, managed by former Yankees catcher Wally Schang. He then went 14-1 in two years pitching at Mesa Community College, where he also played basketball, and then went 3-5 at the University of Colorado before signing to play in the New York Yankees organization. He spent four years in the minor leagues, missing one of them with a fractured wrist sustained while playing basketball. Shell was 7-2 with a 1.84 ERA in 1957 and 9-4 with a 2.85 ERA his first two years, but struggled the year after his injury, going 5-17 with a 4.89 ERA.


With the Wildcats, Shell played all four years on the baseball team, leading Sycamore to the state final his senior year. The team's only other loss in his final two seasons was in the regional finals his junior year. Shell threw four no-hitters and also played third base.


He also competed in track and field, never losing in the pole vault, during his senior season while also playing baseball. Shell had to miss the state meet because of a conflict with the state baseball tournament.


Shell also played four years of basketball, earning All-Ohio status his senior year when the Wildcats went 27-1. Sycamore was 25-2 his junior year when they reached the regionals. He was the leading scorer on the team his final two years and was the second-leading scorer as a sophomore when the Wildcats were 24-4.


He graduated from Colorado with an engineering degree and worked for 40 years in the aerospace industry. He and his wife, Laverne, have lived near Sacramento, California, for the last 53 years. He has stayed active and captained a senior tennis team that won a national championship in 2005.