Gershon, Ernest J.
He graduated in Physical Education at the State Teachers College of La Crosse, Wisconsin in 1937, received his Masterâ€™s Degree at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, in 1940 and his P.E.D. at Indiana University in 1954. He also attended summer sessions at Miami University, Oxford, Ohio, developing majors in education and English Literature.
Outside of high school, Ernie was a member of the Germania Turnverein Gymnastic Society, the Sokol Prokrop Gymnastic Society which he helped restore.Â Â He was also a member of Our Lady of Lourdes Drama Club which presented plays and Minstrel Shows. He was president of the Young Menâ€™s Sodality.
Ernie was a teacher in Spooner, Wisconsin high school for two years, in Maple Park School, Middletown, Ohio, for three years, and UWL for 36 years. One summer, he taught at the University of Washington Seattle.
After WWII, Ernie worked as a northwest area circulation manager for the La Crosse Tribune from February through August in 1946. Here he hired boy carriers, edited a newspaper for Tribune carriers and organized carrier softball teams in Sparta and La Crosse.
He was voted teacher of the year by his students and by his professional organization, WAHPERD. Earlier, he had served as president of this organization after editing its newsletter for several years. He received the Excellence Award from the College of HPER and was inducted into the Athletic Wall of Fame.
Together with Hans Reuter he wrote a book entitled, A Primer of Apparatus Gymnastics. He wrote several professional papers including two research papers which he delivered at an international physical education conference in Liege, Belgium. He also attended a conference in Gdansk, Poland.
Other interests of Ernie over the years had been archery, badminton, baseball and softball, bicycling, bowling, camping, canoeing, Chinese and crossword puzzles, collecting butterflies, stamps and knives, using computers, deer hunting, fishing, fly-tying, fly casting, figure skating, golf, Ham Radio, handball, harmonica playing, making walking sticks and cribbage boards, motor cycling, photography, pistol target shooting, racquet ball, reading, repairing and restoring violins, restoring motor cycles, swimming, tennis, volleyball, water skiing, whittling, woodturning and woodcarving, and, as he would say, â€œLoafingâ€.
The University of La Crosse was his life.