Athletic Hall of Fame – 2006 Inductees

Scroll to see all biographies from this induction class.





JerrySkilling06Jerry Skilling

Coach  /  Inducted in 2006

Jerry Skilling began teaching at Marion High School in 1961 after serving in the National Guard in Germany, and after teaching in Hanley Falls, Minnesota, and New Albin-Lansing Key High School in Iowa.

Jerry taught history at Marion High School and was the Marion head track coach from 1964 to 1982.  During his time as head coach, Jerry’s track teams were WaMaC Conference track champions in 1972 and 1982. He organized the first Marion Invitational Track meet, which is still held annually to this day, and he initiated the WaMaC Conference track record book. During his career Jerry also served as varsity golf coach and as an assistant basketball coach.

Jerry was also a charter member of the Marion Athletic Booster Club.

Jerry earned his Bachelor of Arts and master’s degrees from the University of South Dakota.



DanBliss06Dan Bliss

Community Member  /  MHS Class of 1982  /  Inducted in 2006

Dan is the coordinator and founder of the youth girls’ and boys’ basketball tournaments, and he has served as a volunteer coach in basketball and cross country.

Dan became the vice-president of the Marion Athletic Booster Club in 1998, and he has served continually as its president since 1999. During Dan’s tenure more than $200,000 has been raised to help fund many requests for athletic programs and projects in grades 7-12.

Major projects which Dan has helped to accomplish include: Scoreboards at the high school and middle school, irrigation projects, completion of concession stands at the baseball, softball, and soccer complexes, replacement of volleyball standards, the purchase of new football helmets and track equipment, and the replacement of the wrestling mat at the middle school.

Dan participated in basketball and cross country while a student at Marion High School.



MyronRode06Myron Rode

Community Member  /  Inducted in 2006

Many in the community consider Myron Rode to be the father of the Marion Athletic Council. It was Myron’s idea that sparked the creation of the Athletic Council as a means to improve Marion’s athletic facilities and to help the athletic teams at all levels of competition.

Myron spearheaded the fundraising and organized workers to remodel the football and track press box, paint the buildings and stands, and improve the sound system at the football and track complex.

During his tenure with the Athletic Booster Club, Myron started a 3-on-3 basketball tournament as a fundraiser.  Myron recruited sponsors and volunteers and he marketed the tournament to participants, thus benefiting the booster club financially.



BrentConway06Brent Conway*

Athlete  / MHS Class of 1991  /  Inducted in 2006

Brent Conway was a four-sport athlete while attending Marion High School.

In football, Brent was a two-way starter. As a wide receiver, he set single-season school record with fifty-one receptions for 889 yards. He currently ranks first for career receiving yards and is among the all-time leaders for career receptions (57) and receiving touchdowns (10). As a senior, Brent was named first team Class 3A All-State by the Des Moines Register, first team Class 2A/3A All-State by the Iowa Newspaper Association, and first team All-Metro and All-Conference.

As a basketball player Brent was named honorable mention All-WaMaC Conference his junior year and second team All–Conference his senior year.

As a member of the track team, Brent ran on the 4 X 800-meter relay team that qualified for the state track meet during his junior and senior years.

After graduating from Marion High School, Brent attended Coe College. Entering his sophomore year in 1992, Brent was selected as a pre-season All-Conference wide receiver for the Coe football team. However, Brent lost his life in a motorcycle accident prior to his sophomore year in college.



TravisFuller06Travis Fuller

Athlete  / MHS Class of 1991  /  Inducted in 2006

Travis Fuller started for two years at quarterback for Marion High School and is among the all-time passing leaders in many categories.

Travis was the single-season passing leader in the state of Iowa with 2,590 yards and 25 touchdowns in nine games. His accomplishments were single-season records at Marion and ranked Travis among the all-time top ten in the state for single season passing yards.

As a senior, Travis was named first team All-Conference, first team All-Metro, first team INA Class 2A/3A All-State, first team Des Moines Register Class 3A All-State, and first team Des Moines Register Elite All-State. He was named Most Valuable Offensive Player in the Shrine Bowl game his senior year, and his jersey, number 4, was retired at Marion High School. During his junior year in football, he was named first team All-Conference.

In basketball, Travis was named first team All-Metro and second team All-Conference his junior year, and second team All-Metro and first team All-Conference his senior year. He is among the leaders in season and career three-point shots made.

After graduating from Marion, Travis played football for two years each at Coe College and Wartburg College. He became a teacher and football coach in Cedar Rapids. He also has helped coach Marion baseball and football teams.



JoeIckes06Joe Ickes

Athlete  /  MHS Class of 1979  /  Inducted in 2006

Joe Ickes excelled in football and wrestling while attending Marion High School.

In his senior year, Joe was a starting tackle on offense and defense on the football team that finished with a record of 10-1.  Joe was named first team Class 3A All-State by both the Des Moines Register and the Iowa Daily Press Association as well as named to the Des Moines Register Elite All-State team. He was also first team All-Conference and first team All-Metro. Joe was named honorable mention All-Metro his junior year

As a wrestler, Joe was the WaMaC Conference champion at 167 pounds his senior year and placed second at the state meet. His record that season was 26-2.



BradKiburz06Brad Kiburz

Athlete  /  MHS Class of 1973  /  Inducted in 2006

Brad Kiburz earned awards and honors in three sports while attending Marion High School.

As a basketball player, Brad was a varsity letterman for two years and earned All-Conference honorable mention in 1973.

As a member of the track team, Brad was a three-year letter winner and a member of the 1972-73 conference championship track team.

In football, Brad was a three-year varsity letter winner. A defensive end, he was named third team All-State by both the Des Moines Register and the Iowa Daily Press Association. In Brad’s era, All-State teams were not divided by class. He was named  All-Conference and All-Metro as a senior. He was All-Conference honorable mention as a junior on Marion’s undefeated (9-0) conference championship team.

Brad received a football scholarship to Arizona State University, where he played four years and graduated. During his junior year the team went undefeated (12-0) and was ranked 12th in the nation.



KennethOtting06Kenneth Otting

Athlete  /  MHS Class of 1949  /  Inducted in 2006

Kenneth Otting was an outstanding four-sport athlete who was a key member of some of the great early teams coached by Marion High School’s legendary Les Hipple. Ken credits Marion’s athletic and academic programs for his success in life.

In football Ken played offensive and defensive back. Records on yards gained from that era are incomplete, but Otting ranks among all-time Marion leaders in career touchdowns (27), career touchdown receptions (12), career points scored and single season touchdowns (18), among other categories. He made three touchdowns on kick-off or punt returns.  He was named first team all-conference as a senior.

In basketball, he started at guard on two conference championship teams with a combined record of 41-4. His senior year, the team was undefeated during the regular season, the only Marion team to accomplish this feat. Ken was named first team All-Conference and honorable mention All-State by the Iowa Daily Press Association  that year. All-State selections were made from all 900 Iowa schools regardless of size. In his junior season, Ken was named honorable mention All-Conference.

A four-year honor student, Ken attended Cornell College where he played several sports and was pitcher and shortstop on the Rams’ baseball team.

After service in the Army, Ken returned to Marion where he was a teacher and coach from 1955-1961.


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