LaVern Dilweg

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LaVern Dilweg
End
Personal information
Date of birth: (1903-11-01)November 1, 1903
Place of birth: Milwaukee, Wisconsin, U.S.
Date of death: January 2, 1968(1968-01-02) (aged 64)
Place of death: St. Petersburg, Florida
Height: 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m) Weight: 200 lb (91 kg)
Career information
High school: Washington (WI)
College: Marquette
Debuted in 1926 for the Milwaukee Badgers
Last played in 1934 for the Green Bay Packers
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Stats at NFL.com
LaVern Dilweg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Wisconsin's 8th district
In office
January 3, 1943 – January 3, 1945
Preceded by Joshua L. Johns
Succeeded by John W. Byrnes
Personal details
Political party Democratic

LaVern Ralph "Lavvie" Dilweg (November 1, 1903 – January 2, 1968) was a professional football player, attorney, and U.S. Congressman from Wisconsin.[1][2][3][4]

Born and raised in Milwaukee, Dilweg attended its public schools and graduated from Washington High School. He enrolled at Marquette University in Milwaukee and played college football for the Golden Avalanche under head coach Frank Murray. A three-sport college athlete, he played center on the basketball team and was a shot putter on the track team.[5] Dilweg was an All-American end, and played in the first East–West Shrine Game in San Francisco in late 1925.[6][7] The Golden Avalanche had a record of 28–4–1 during Dilweg's four years.[8]

After two undergraduate years at Marquette, Dilweg had enrolled in the MU law school, and was admitted to the Wisconsin Bar in 1927.[9] While in law school in 1926, he played professionally for the Milwaukee Badgers, an NFL team in its fifth year that folded before the end of the season.[10] While practicing law in Green Bay, he continued to play pro football, he signed with the Green Bay Packers in August 1927[11] and played through the 1934 season, with football in the morning and afternoons at the law office.[10] Dilweg was recognized as one of the best ends in the NFL during the late 1920s and early 1930s and the Packers won three consecutive NFL championships in 1929, 1930, and 1931. Dilweg was a football official in the Big Ten Conference until his move to Washington, D.C. in early 1943.[12]

Considered the best all-around end in pro football prior to Don Hutson, Dilweg was named to the NFL 1920s All-Decade Team, and is only one of two players on the list not in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He was named consensus all-pro for six consecutive years, with four of those years being unanimous all-pro.

After football[edit]

During World War II, Dilweg was elected to Congress in 1942 as a Democrat from the 8th district. He announced his candidacy in late July, less than four months before the election,[12] and defeated incumbent Joshua Johns. He served in the 78th United States Congress (January 3, 1943 – January 3, 1945), but was not re-elected in 1944, defeated by John Byrnes, who went on to serve 28 years in the seat. Dilweg resumed the practice of law in Green Bay and Washington, and was confirmed as a member of the Foreign Claims Settlement Commission in 1961, appointed by President Kennedy.

Death[edit]

Ill for several months after surgery, Dilweg was on vacation with his wife in Florida in early 1968 when he died in St. Petersburg, where they had been visiting friends.[3][4][13] His death came just two days after the famous Ice Bowl game at Green Bay on New Year's Eve. Dilweg is interred at the Fort Howard Cemetery in Green Bay.

Personal[edit]

Dilweg's wife, Eleanor Coleman Dilweg (1906-1978) was an Olympic swimmer from Milwaukee and a former world record holder.[14][15] They met at Marquette, married in 1927, and had three sons.[4] Son Gary (b. 1937) graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy and served in the U.S. Marines, and later in the Wisconsin legislature as a Republican from Green Bay.[16][17][18]

Grandson Anthony Dilweg was an NFL quarterback from 1989 to 1991, with the Packers and Los Angeles Raiders. He played college football at Duke under head coach Steve Spurrier.

Video[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Biographical Sketch of LaVern Dilweg". Wisconsin Blue Book. 1944. p. 23. 
  2. ^ "Football star, Dilweg, dies". Milwaukee Journal. January 2, 1968. p. 17, part 2. 
  3. ^ a b "Dilweg, ex-Pack, MU great, dies". Milwaukee Sentinel. UPI. January 3, 1968. p. 1, part 2. 
  4. ^ a b c "Dilweg had two careers; was successful in both". Milwaukee Journal. January 3, 1968. p. 16, part 2. 
  5. ^ LaVern "LaVerne Dilweg". Marquette University Athletics. Hall of Fame. 2011. Retrieved March 22, 2014. 
  6. ^ Runyon, Damon (December 26, 1925). "All-star elevens get big grid test on coast today". Milwaukee Sentinel. Universal Service. p. 10. 
  7. ^ Runyon, Damon (December 28, 1925). "Runyon heaps praise on play of Lavvie Dilweg". Milwaukee Sentinel. Universal Service. p. 9. 
  8. ^ "Marquette". College Football Data Warehouse. yearly totals. Retrieved March 23, 2014. 
  9. ^ Hylton, J. Gordon (November 2009). "Lavvie Dilweg ('27): MU Law’s Contribution to the NFL (and to Congress)". Marquette University Law School. faculty blog. Retrieved March 22, 2014. 
  10. ^ a b Bledsoe, Terry (October 7, 1965). "Halas helped make Dilweg a Packer". Milwaukee Sentinel. Packers of the past. p. 21, part 2. 
  11. ^ "Dilweg signs with Packers". Milwaukee Sentinel. August 21, 1927. p. 3, section 3. 
  12. ^ a b "Dilweg enters Congress race". Milwaukee Journal. July 20, 1942. p. 6, part 2. 
  13. ^ "Ex-Packer great 'Lavvie' Dilweg dies here at 64". St. Petersburg Times. January 3, 1968. p. 3C. 
  14. ^ Dilweg, Eleanor C. (May 1, 1933). "Swimming is unequaled for benefits to health, beauty, and poise". Milwaukee Journal. p. 2, part 2. 
  15. ^ "Dilweg dies; ex-Olympian". Milwaukee Journal. October 3, 1978. p. 8, part 2. 
  16. ^ "Dilweg to seek Proxmire seat". Milwaukee Sentinel. May 1, 1976. p. 6, part 1. 
  17. ^ Shiveley, Neil H. (February 13, 1980). "Legislators charge Green Bay paper factor in death". Milwaukee Sentinel. p. 1, part 1. 
  18. ^ "Gary T. Dilweg". Wisconsin Historical Society. Dictionary of Wisconsin History. Retrieved March 22, 2014. 

External links[edit]

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Joshua L. Johns
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Wisconsin's 8th congressional district

January 3, 1943 - January 3, 1945
Succeeded by
John W. Byrnes