zzzLeon O'Dellzzz


{short description of image} 1989///
Leon O'Dell became interested in horseshoe pitching by watching others pitch during lunch breaks where he worked, in 1965, a neighbor and friend by the name of Fred Butler (himself a Hall of Famer) would pitch shoes with pitch shoes with Leon in the back yard. Not only did Leon learn to pitch, but within a few short years, he became an elegant one, averaging in the 50% range.

Leon and his wife, Carol live in Shaftsbury, VT. They have one child, Susan and three grandchildren, Aaron, Alyssa, and Emily.

Leon has been a member of the Vermont Horseshoes Pitchers Association and the National Horseshoe Pitchers Association for some twenty-eight years.

Leon won the New England's "Most Improved Player Award" in 1986, and played in two World Horseshoe Tournaments in 1987 and 1988.

Perhaps his most notable accomplishment dates back to 1971. In that year, Leon and a few horseshoe buddies worked endless nights and weekends laying out and creating the "Bennington Horseshoe Club" and forming a league, Sometimes working by himself for hours at a time. Leon has kept the club together over the years. Leon was Vice-President of the club in 1971 and held that office until 1982. In 1985, Leon became president again and has held that office to date in 1099. he has been the Tournament Director for over 28 years, and has been involved in voting for the Hall of Fame in 1993-1999.

Leon also was participant in many New England Tournaments starting in 1973. He finished in 1st place 3 times and 2nd once, 1977, Class c with a 6 and 1 record, averaging 61.2%, 1986, Class B with an 7 and 0 record, averaging 65.0%, 1988, 2nd in Class B with a 5 and 2 record, averaging 57%. In 1992, Leon's dream of hosting the New England's in Bennington came true. There were 277 pitchers in 38 classes that participated. Leon pitched in Class BB, taking 1stplace with a 6 and 1 record, averaging 65.4%.

An all around good sport, on and off the courts, Leon has dedicated himself to the fine game of Horseshoes.

The VT HPA welcomes Leon (Joe) O'Dell into the Vermont Hall of Fame as an Organizer.