- Athletic Division
Gary Kroner, PHS 1959, came to PHS in 1955 after playing football and basketball for three years under Coach Bob Nelson at St. Patrick Grade School in Green Bay. In his freshman year at PHS, he was coached by Don Guyer in football and basketball and as a sophomore by Clayton Maloney. Ted Fritsch coached Kroner for three years in tennis and two years in football and basketball. He was given the MVP award in basketball and football at PHS and also in baseball for the city of Green Bay’s American Legion team.
Gary went on to UW-Madison where he earned a degree in electrical engineering. He played football as a defensive back, running back, and place kicker for the Badgers, and was on the team as it won the Big Ten Championship in 1962. The team, ranked second in the country, went on to play in the 1963 Rose Bowl against the top-ranked Southern Cal Trojans.
It was the first time the first and second ranked teams met in a major bowl game. The Badgers lost 37-42.
Gary was drafted 93rd overall as a defensive back by Vince Lombardi’s Green Bay Packers in 1963. He tore a leg muscle in the Coaches All American Game in June 1963 and never fully recovered. After the 1963 season, he became a place kicking specialist with the Denver Broncos.
After the 1967 season, Gary worked as an aerospace engineer for four years with Ball Brothers Research in Boulder, Colorado and became a real estate broker in the Boulder area. Gary married Sharon Root in 1966, and they have two daughters, Jennifer and Stephanie.