We received a lovely note from Phil Curtis, Class of 1963, with a poetic tribute to Tommy Mansfield from Phil, who passed away on February 27, 2012. Tommy Mansfield was a two-time State Tennis Champion while at UAHS.
Here is Phil's tribute to Tommy Mansfield:
Tommy Mansfield was a most wonderful guy,
Who could flat smack a tennis ball on the fly;
He loved his family and Sherry Sherman too,
To all his friends and teammates he was true.
At Upper Arlington sports were number one,
In that competitive setting he was a top gun;
Basketball and tennis were Tommys game,
But it was the latter that brought him fame.
Twice state champ for his high school team,
It was college where he lived out his dream;
With blue chippers on a Northwestern squad,
Tommy flourished on the courts and the quad.
He brought to his life a wink and a flair,
Sometimes augmented by a silent prayer;
Ventures varied from tennis courts to sales,
And his successes always outdid the fails.
Business like tennis was a challenging goal,
Being in the arena seemed to salve his soul;
All was accomplished with humor and class,
But always endeavored to finish first not last.
In retrospect, when its all said and done,
Tommy Mansfield lived a life full of fun;
True always to his wife, family and friends,
This Champion achieved all his lofty ends!
Philip K. Curtis
UAHS 1963 Classmate & Teammate
What a beautiful poem by the distinguished Mr Curtis. I'm so sorry to hear about Tom. He taught me a little about life and a lot about tennis! If you recall, I bought his green Fiat 600 with 2 racing stripes done the middle for $125.00. Fred Carpenter, Brad Dupont and I had a lot of fun with that car. I sold it after my 2nd year of college to Tom Hartman's brother. After that, who knows! At the last reunion, I think the 40th but not sure, I spoke with Tom about his car and his tennis and his life. He was very relaxed and very happy with Sherry at his side.
Whenever I run around my backhand for a big forehand and have that "I'm gonna kill that ball" look in my eye and that trademark headcocked to the right side, I will always think of Tommy. God bless him and his family.