Tom Johnson*

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Tom Johnson had an enviable record as a four-sport athlete during his three years at Napa High. He went out for 11 major sports during that period and was a first string performer on ten varsity teams: three basketball, three baseball, two football and two track. The irony of that statement is that the only varsity team on which Johnson didn’t start was his sophomore year football team, and football was what Johnson did best. In basketball, Johnson was a guard on a co-championship team in his junior year, a championship team his senior year and a starting guard for half of his sophomore season on a team that was 22-3. Johnson was the starting first baseman for three years during Coach John College’s tenure during the middle 1940s. He did not go out for track in his senior year, but performed well in the weight events as a sophomore and junior. In football, Johnson was a reserve guard on the varsity as a sophomore, the starting center and linebacker and Most Outstanding Lineman as a junior and the Most Valuable Player on a very good Napa High team as a senior. He continued his outstanding linebacking work on the Napa J.C. team until the Korean War called him and many others. He served as a drill instructor for the Marines at Camp Pendleton. As an undergraduate at Napa High, Johnson showed his leadership ability as a class officer, Block N officer and NHS Student Body President during the spring semester of 1947. After the war, Johnson worked in the Napa County Sheriff’s Department and became Undersheriff for his long time friend, the late Earl Randol. He later went on to become Chief of Police for the City of Calistoga. Johnson was a great athlete, a true team player, a leader, a responsible citizen.