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Joseph P. Bonchonsky, Sr.

Joseph P. Bonchonsky SR, 1334 Ramona Drive, Mount Shasta CA 96067


Born in Pittston, PA, a coal mining town in NE Pennsylvania, fourth of nine children. Five brothers: three in WWII, one Korea, one Vietnam Vet.


Education: Pittston High School, Wyoming Seminary (Kingston, PA), Kutztown State Teachers College, Penn State University (BS in Industrial Engineering).


Military Duty: USA Army Corps of Engineers; Fort Leonard Wood, MO, Company Commander, Battalion Staff (Roads & Airfields), Regimental Staff (Ass’t Adjutant, Information & Education Officer, Athletic Director, Physical Training Officer); Camp Fuchinobe, Japan, prepared Rebuild Schedule for Far East Theater engineering equipment rebuild at Camp Zama, Japan. In 54, Joe was to be dropped behind enemy lines with seven other 2nd Lieutenants. Mao Tse Tung had amassed over a million soldiers to invade all of Indo China. President Dwight Ike Eisenhower airlifted every available military man to the Far East. For two weeks of the most intense planning, Joe and the 7 other USA Army Corps of Engineer Lieutenants concentrated on every detail of our last days on earth, behind enemy lines. The year was 1954 and Joe experienced two close calls, once in the preparation of leading an engineering company during the Korean War and the second time in the close call of the Chinese Army invading Indo-China.    


Family Soccer Information: Joseph SR. 1964, Spouse Ingeborg, coach.  Sons Michael.1964, Joseph.1964, Andrew.1967, Daughters Michelle.1971 and Tatiana.1976. Grandchildren Thye.1977, Carley.1979, Molly1979, Tyler.2006, Nyah.2007. Great Grandchild Kieran.2011, Liam. (2018). Son Michael & grandson Tyhe coached Carley’s AYSO teams together. Wife Inga coached Michelle to three AYSO Girls’ All Star Championships. JPB SR. AYSO, 1964, first assisted on opening day, 1964, in carrying the very heavy wooden goal posts and field maintenance at Jefferson School Field (my toughest year).


Sons Michael, Joseph JR, Andrew were on CIF SS soccer championship teams at West Torrance High School. Michael played college soccer at El Camino College. Joseph JR played college soccer at Harbor College, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, and LA Aztecs pro team. Andrew played college ball at El Camino, UCLA, coached at Domingues College, Cal Berkeley. Andrew is Director of Soccer Coaches in Gilbert, Arizona (2008) (previously at BayOaks, Oakland, CA) (2000).  Daughter Michelle, Carrie Britnacher, and Theresa Richter and many Torrance Soccer Moms approached the Torrance Unified School District BOD and begged for the commencement of girl’s high school soccer, which followed shortly thereafter. Daughter Tatiana, a gifted player.


Joseph SR. lettered as a quarterback in high school football. At Wyo Sem Joe lettered in three sports; fullback and safety in football, free style swimmer, and baseball pitcher. At Kutztown STC, as a freshman on the varsity football team, Joe started every game as left halfback and corner back on defense. On the Kutztown baseball team, Detroit Scout George Katalinas of Oly, PA offered Joe a Detroit baseball-pitching contract. At Penn State, primarily with WWII vets in 1949, Joe, a sophomore, made the starting team as a defensive corner back. In his sophomore year Penn State planned to switch from Single Wing to T-formation and Joe was to be one of three quarterback candidates. Joe Paterno as Rip Engle’s quarterback coach (while still a senior at Brown University) arrived during Penn State baseball season where JPB was pleased to be.  Joe Paterno requested the baseball coach, Joe Bedenk, to have JPB play on the Penn State Spring football team. Sharing two sports at the same time and studying industrial engineering was complicated. Joe also joined Phi Sigma Kappa fraternity to concentrate on his engineering degree and ROTC Officer’s School. As Regimental Athletic Director at Ft. Leonard Wood, MO, Joe played baseball, coached and reffed boxing, and coached the football team. At Camp Fuchinobe, Japan, Joe started to play golf and later at the Mount Shasta Resort, CA, pared the 70-par course at age 75. Joe in his 82nd year (2012) plays golf 4 times a week and fly-fishes regularly on the Sacramento and McCloud Rivers, and manages his own youth program fly-fishing pond for local families.


After coaching the AYSO South Bay Hawks in the first year (1967) of Under-10 teams, winning the South Bay Championship, and the Cup Championship, and reaching the AYSO Finals in the Los Angeles Coliseum, Joe moved on to reffing and had the distinction of coaching, reffing, and playing in the Los Angeles Coliseum (LA Press TEAM). Joe wrote over 100 articles for the Soccer America weekly magazine that included a series of classes in reffing soccer (So You Want To Be A Ref)(1972).


AYSO soccer graduates were reaching high school age and in need of referees. Joe eventually became “President” of the Southern California Soccer Officials Association referees for both high school and college soccer. SCSOA was affiliated with the National Intercollegiate Soccer Officials Association (NISOA). The LA Jr. Chamber of  Commerce organized the WATTS SUMMER GAMES after the WATTS RIOTS. As chief referee of the soccer games portion, Joe formulated the THREE REFS ON THE FIELD (TROF) soccer referee mechanics that has been implemented nationally for the best of game control and expeditious training of referees at the youth, high school, and college level.


In 1985, Joe and Inga retired to Mount Shasta CA and immediately became involved in the local youth soccer program as a referee, coaching instructor, referee instructor and also commenced a Soccer Camp with son Andrew (then Cal Berkeley Women’s soccer coach).

Today, Joe and Inga are delighted to watch AYSO player graduates in the MLS Soccer professional teams, men and women, going forward in the FIFA world with successful World Cup adventures and defeating Spain (2-0) (2009), the No.1 European National Team in the FIFA sponsored World Confederation Cup Tournament is priceless. I remember my sophomore year at Penn State when my Engineering Foundry Instructor Bill Jeffries, coach of the USA NATIONAL SOCCER TEAM, had just returned from defeating England 1-0 in 1950 and upon roll call the first day of class, Coach Jeffries addressing me as the “American football player” asked me to explain when football players use their feet in playing football. In reply, I stated, “When we kick off, field goals soccer style, punts, and occasionally after a fumble..” Bill Jeffries, a Scot, epitomizes the wonderful contribution that foreign-born soccer coaches have brought to the USA. The USA THIRD-PLACE in the first ever World Cup in 1930 was just our beginning. We in the USA have come a long way in soccer and great credit is heaped upon the many adults who championed the AYSO youth soccer program and especially in the early AYSO PIONEER DAYS.
Joe Bonchonsky, today, is leading the PIONEER OF AYSO Historians to compile the PIONEERS OF AYSO history and to primarily honor all of the PIONEERS OF AYSO who selfishly volunteered to dedicate their "time and treasure" to the youth of America. In reading the many Profiles herein, you can grasp an inkling of the quality of the PIONEERS OF AYSO. The story of each and every individual is unique and therein lies the reason for success in AYSO.