The Merchant Marine Athletics family lost a true friend and legend as Jules A. "Red" Wagner passed away earlier this week. Wagner was inducted into the Merchant Marine Athletic Hall of Fame as part of the 2005 class. He continued to serve and support the Academy throughout his life and will be fondly remembered by the entire Kings Point community. We offer our condolences to the Wagner family and to Red all we can say is thank you for everything and you will be greatly missed.
Jules A. "Red" Wagner's Plaque in the USMMA Athletic Hall of Fame Reads:
Jules A. “Red” Wagner, a 1945 USMMA graduate, became one of the athletes to represent the academy in high-profile competition. He was an accomplished speed skater prior to arriving at Kings Point and represented the academy well with numerous top finishes in Middle Atlantic States Skating Association competitions. Wagner advanced to the finals of the Senior Men’s Silver Skates Derby at Madison Square Garden in 1943, and recorded a fifth-place finish in 1945. Adm. Giles C. Stedman recognized Wagner for his efforts by writing a letter of commendation, and ordered Kendrick Field to be flooded to create a practice rink for Wagner. He has also been an active supporter of the Academy following his graduation. Wagner has been actively involved with the Northern New Jersey Alumni Chapter Mariners Award since its inception in 1964, and has chaired the program since 1970. He worked in the press box at Mariner’s football games from 1974-1994, including spending five years as the public address announcer.
Wagner also received a number of awards for his contributions to the Academy, including: the first Northern New Jersey Alumni Chapter Achievement Award, the Blue & Gray Outstanding Alumni Service for Varsity Athletics Award, the 1980 Meritorious Alumni Service Award, and the 1983 Alumni Association Information Representative of the Year. He has also been a loyal member of the Mariners gridiron club for over 20 years. Wagner has additionally served on the Alumni Association Board of Directors and was Regional Vice President. He has continued to compete in athletic events since leaving the Academy, completing five New York City Marathons and a Long Island Marathons from 1985-1990. He has earned over 200 awards in downhill skiing in the Slalom, Giant Slalom, and Super G events. In the 2004-05 season alone, he won 15 first-place medals and won the American Ski Racing Alliance 2005 Season class championship; which he also won in 2004.