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#1 Posted : Friday, March 19, 2010 4:35:34 AM(UTC)
PackersHome name: Arrigo
Real Name (first only): Joe
Age: 32 (April 18th)
Current City: Corona/Riverside
Hometown: Upland Ca. (but born in Milwaukee)
Occupation: Radio Host

1) How did you choose your screen name?

It is my last name (ah-REE-go)

2) Could you tell us a little about where you grew up and about your family?

I grew up in Upland Ca. I also lived in Pasadena Ca and near Palm Springs after I got married. I am married with 3 kids (10, 9 & 8). My grandfather started the Vince Lombardi Football Conference in Wisconsin in the 70's but shut it down after 2 years because he found the Treasurer was stealing money. Rather then go public w/ it and has a black eye on the Lombardi name he decided to shut it down. Now over 25,000 football teams that started in the V.L.C. is active in the state of Wisconsin.

3) Did you play in any sports or where you involved with any High School clubs and such?

I played baseball, football, basketball and track in H.S. and football and baseball in college.

4) What is your fondest memory of your teenage years?

Being the first male in my family to graduate H.S. I as also the valedictorian. But I think just living with my grandparents was the fondest memory.

5) What was your first job?

Show salesmen @ Montgomery Wards (that lasted 3 weeks).

6) What lead to your dedicated following of the Packers?

I watched a Packers/Bears game when I was 3 and fell in love w/ the Packers uniforms. I also loved Lynn Dickey and James Lofton (as a young boy).

7) Could you tell us one of your favorite memories of the Packers?

I have a couple, seeing them play the L.A. Rams (in person) in 91, 84 and 88. Going to the playoff game in AZ this past January (10'), but I would say watching them win the Super Bowl in 96'.

8 ) How did you find the PackersHome and what keeps you active on the site?

Browsing various Packers fans sites.

9) What other sports teams do you follow?

Yankees, Dodgers, Brewers, Lakers, USC athletics, L.A. Kings (cuz' I have to have a hockey team).

10) When youre not on PackersHome what could you likely be found doing with your spare time?

Spending it w/ my family, Xbox 360, writing on my site, http://joeslockerroom.com

11) If you could have one moment being part of the Packer organization, what would it be?

I would love to be the G.M. (Sorry ted Thompson).

12) How many trips have you made to Lambeau?


13) What is your worst fear?

Going to hell. But losing my family (wife & kids) to death.

14) What type of hobbies do you enjoy?

sports, xbox, music, T.V.

15) Whats your favorite food?


16) Where are some of the places youve been, and where are some of your favorites.

I have been all over, but I would say California is special. Sunshine, beaches, snow, mountains and that is in the winter!

17) What is one thing you've always wanted to do, but haven't done yet in your lifetime?

Go to Hawaii with my wife for a couple weeks. I would also like to go to Italy for a while. But if it was just me, I would want to go to Lambeau for 1 game to watch the Packers in person @ home.

18) If you could live anywhere where would it be?

Where ever the lord wants me. But Newport Beach is where I want to retire. I LOVE the beach and am a beach bum!

19) Name your favorite 5 Packers all time and explain the reason for one of them.

Sterling Sharpe: He is my all-time favorite. He was the total package at WR.

Greg Jennings: Jennings is a class act on and off the field. Plays the game the way it should be played.

LeRoy Butler: I followed him at FSU and was glad the Packers drafted him in round 2. He was a complete player and leader.

Reggie White: Do I have to say more.

Lynn Dickey: My 1st favorite Packer.

20) Up to this date, what is you favorite PackersHome feature or memory?

21) PM and post the next person to be interviewed.

Umm, really?
#2 Posted : Friday, March 19, 2010 5:23:00 AM(UTC)
The man behind the rumors!!
#3 Posted : Friday, March 19, 2010 11:15:54 AM(UTC)
" said: Go to Quoted Post
My grandfather started the Vince Lombardi Football Conference in Wisconsin in the 70's but shut it down after 2 years because he found the Treasurer was stealing money. Rather then go public w/ it and has a black eye on the Lombardi name he decided to shut it down. Now over 25,000 football teams that started in the V.L.C. is active in the state of Wisconsin.

Never of heard of the Vince Lombardi Football Conference.... and I went to every football camp I could as a high school player getting ready for college ball with eyes towards the life...

Tell me a little about this conference.. I don't think we have 25k programs in the state total... so I am curious.
#4 Posted : Friday, March 19, 2010 11:23:53 AM(UTC)
Ahh... had to search it a little differently... Little League team.. might explain it... we never had youth football in my time..

" said: Go to Quoted Post
In the 1970s, Arrigo was involved in the creation of the Vince Lombardi Football Conference for Boys.

"Marie Lombardi, Lombardi's widow, gave him written permission to use the name for the youth football program," Joe said. When money was mishandled by someone with the group, Arrigo stopped the use of Lombardi's name out of respect for the coach, according to his grandson. Thousands of youngsters have participated in teams born from the conference.
#5 Posted : Friday, March 19, 2010 12:02:37 PM(UTC)
+1 Joe !

Great to have the interview back, too!
#6 Posted : Friday, March 19, 2010 2:03:05 PM(UTC)
" said: Go to Quoted Post
+1 Joe !

Great to have the interview back, too!

Couldn't agree more. Glad to see that this is still being done.

Welcome Joe, and great read.
#7 Posted : Friday, March 19, 2010 2:13:06 PM(UTC)
" said: Go to Quoted Post
+1 Joe !

Great to have the interview back, too!

I'm a little disappointed personally. Specifically question 20.

#8 Posted : Friday, March 19, 2010 3:28:03 PM(UTC)
My bad, I didn't see those! I updated it so no need to be disappointed! LOL

It was youth football. When my grandfather passed in November of 2009, MJS did a nice article on him. He was also the D.A. and State Admim for Little League Baseball and some people have said that LLBB would not have been as successful w/o him spearheading the effort. They actually had the state trophy named after him (for the team that won Wisconsin and went to Central Regionals).

North West LL was his baby though. He got the city to donate the land (free), the uniforms and equipment donated (free) and founded it. He wouldn't take the credit for it and asked that the other 4 original board members also be recognized as well. But my grandfather and a gentleman by the name of Jim Beckham actually paid some men to coach out of their own pockets at first.
#9 Posted : Friday, March 19, 2010 5:29:14 PM(UTC)
That is the article I found this morning.. I didn't post the link to it because.. well I didn't know if it should be posted here... but since you mentioned it.. I thought maybe it should be posted..

I applaud all he did for youth sports and honestly.. should be honored for it.


Arrigo made Little League field of dreams come true

By Amy Rabideau Silvers of the Journal Sentinel

Posted: Nov. 14, 2008

Joe Arrigo remembered being told that his vision for a Little League ballpark on Milwaukee's northwest side was nothing but a pipe dream.

"My reply was that they were half right, that it is a dream, and it will always be my field of dreams," Arrigo wrote years later in a history for the Milwaukee Northwest Little League.

The dream came true in 1965. After repeated rejections, Arrigo finally won permission for the park to be developed near Timmerman Field, on vacant land owned by Milwaukee County. Arrigo got the approval of the County Board with the help of other volunteers and business leaders.

Then the Little League volunteers built it, and the kids kept coming.

Joseph W. Arrigo died of natural causes Nov. 4. He was 83.

Arrigo grew up on New York's east side, an Italian boy in an Irish neighborhood. Early on, he took up boxing, and he earned a state Golden Gloves title.

"The man who became Rocky Marciano's manager came to their tenement and wanted to sign him to a contract to turn pro when he turned 18," said Joe Arrigo, his grandson and namesake. "My great-grandmother chased him out of the kitchen with a broom because, a month earlier, his cousin had died of a brain aneurysm in the boxing ring."

Instead, he managed to enlist in the U.S. Navy at 16 1/2 - after he was twice caught lying about his age. He served from 1942 through World War II and during the Korean War and planned to make the Navy his career. After nearly 10 years, he received a medical discharge for lung problems.

He ended up visiting Navy buddies in Milwaukee and decided to stay. Arrigo also found his wife; he married the former Carol Lehor in 1954. He worked as a mechanic and then for Miller Brewing before taking a job in California.

There he managed his son's Little League team. Back in Milwaukee, he heard about a neighborhood program being run by a few volunteer dads with used equipment and homemade bases.

Arrigo became one of the "Founding Fathers" of the Milwaukee Northwest Little League, involved at every level of the organization, including as president.

"He started leagues up north and in Burlington and all over the state," said his wife. "He was state chairman for Little League."

The couple later moved back to California to be near family, but returned in 2004.

"He loved Little League, and he loved all children," his grandson said. "He coached me for a long time until I played high school. He never yelled. He didn't yell at the kids. He would pull a kid aside and talk to him."

"It's just a game," Arrigo would tell the players.

In the 1970s, Arrigo was involved in the creation of the Vince Lombardi Football Conference for Boys.

"Marie Lombardi, Lombardi's widow, gave him written permission to use the name for the youth football program," Joe said. When money was mishandled by someone with the group, Arrigo stopped the use of Lombardi's name out of respect for the coach, according to his grandson. Thousands of youngsters have participated in teams born from the conference.

So a +1 in his honor.. thanks for sharing.
#10 Posted : Friday, March 19, 2010 5:36:11 PM(UTC)
Thank you. He was a great man. My hero and my best friend. I miss him greatly and feel so lucky that I had him as the person who raised me and taught me how to be a man.
#11 Posted : Friday, March 19, 2010 11:44:45 PM(UTC)
Wow. He really sounded like a great person. Good read.

Good interview too. Nice to have you on board.

Also, nice to see the interviews back.
#12 Posted : Saturday, March 20, 2010 3:51:21 AM(UTC)
"Pop's" was a good person. He would give his last $2 for a friend in need. He trade to help everyone he knew in any way possible if they needed it (and even if they didn't).

But the youth was where his heart was at (other than his family). He would spend hours on end at the fields to make sure everything was alright. He would draft the kids that were "at risk youth" and kids who were from the wrong side of the tracks. He was one of those kids so he knew what they were feeling. He would help groom them into responsible young men that always showed respect. He would do it by showing them respect he felt they deserved as people and NEVER yelling at them. He would simply talk to them, man to man.

My grandparents raised me. They are my mom and dad as far as I am concerned. My mom had me @ 17 and my biological father bolted when he found out my mom was pregnant. My grandfather was my dad, best friend, confidant and my life's teacher.

My 1st year playing LL Baseball I was 7 going on 8. When I tried out they wanted to draft me to the "Majors" because I was better than most of the kids in the Minors OR Majors (they was no "Farm Div") despite being one of the shortest kids in the league. He didn't allow them to do so because he wanted to coach me for at least a year and wanted me to get a feel for the game. By the time I was 10 when I went up.

The team I was on was mostly made up of Mexicans and African-Americans, with a couple white kids. Well, when I was 12 we were playing a team that we were battling for the title (which we had won the previous 2 years). The umpire was a young kid who looked about 19. He made a comment to a parent before the game started. He said "I won't let that "spic" team get the win today, watch what I do".

I was pitching the first 4 innings that day. I threw countless balls RIGHT DOWN THE MIDDLE and he called them balls. While their pitcher got EVERY CALL. There were plays were we beat out balls hit to the infield but he called us out.

After the game he looked over at my grandfather (who was Italian American) and said "take that ghetto team back to the projects where they belong old man". My grandfather LOST IT. The ump was about 6'2, 200lbs while my grandpa was in early/mid 60's 5'8, 165 (but was a Golden Gloves boxer). Poppa went after him, he grabbed him by the shirt collar lifted him up against the fence and was just about to deck him when he heard our other coach say "he's only 17 Joe, DON'T"! He released him to the ground and the kid ran off to a waiting car.

He was suspended for 6 games, and as a team we went on to win all 6 games by an averaging 25 runs a game. We played for him. He defended us. Later that year at the closing ceremonies he won "sportsman of the year". LOL! It was great.

When I came back from college after I found out my then girlfriend (now wife) was pregnant with our daughter, my family was scared to tell him and scared for me to tell him. They thought he would disown me because she is African-American. It was a Tuesday night and he was painting our town house. It was me and him, alone. I told him. I wasn't nervous, I wasn't afraid, I was what he raised me to be, a man.

He was more excited then anyone else. He wanted my wife to move in and wanted me to marry her. I told him that I would, but not because she was pregnant, and I did. He loved her and all our kids as he loved me.

My grandparents moved back to Wisconsin in 2004.

When he was dieing I had to fly back to Milwaukee. I wasn't going to not be there for him. He had dementia and didn't remember anyone other than 1 of my cousins some times. But when I walked in his hospital room at the V.A. Hospital, and when he seen me, he smiled, and tried to sit up and started breathing harder. He knew who I was and we talked. He said in a tired voice "I aint going any where" when I told him it was Ok to go home (to heaven). He just kept touching my face. It was a shock to see me standing there to him. It was a day we both wished we had more often in the year after he moved to Wisconsin.

His room looked right into Miller Park. He was in the hospice section (I think the 3rd floor) and you could see right into center field. Only grandpa could have a view like that. Joe Di'Maggio was his favorite player growing up and loved that I also player CF.

Later that night we came back to the hospital and he wanted me, and only me to hold his hand as he fell asleep. I did. On November 3rd my grandma, mom, sister and I went back to see him. They wanted to eat and I wasn't hungry so I stayed with him in the room. He woke up and seen me. I told him that I loved him, he was my best friend and hero and I thanked him for being my father and teaching me how to be a man. He looked at me, with his beautiful face and said "I love you too". Those were the last words he ever said to me.

Sorry if I went on to long about him, and tearing up as I write this, but he was my Pal. He was the one person that could always relate to me and have my back no matter if I was right or wrong. He taught me to put God and my family first and everything else second. he taught me it was ok for a man to cry and show emotion.

When I started to write the rumors 6 or 7 years ago, he was my biggest fan. He would listen to the calls I would get and read the e-mails and just say that pro sports is a crazy business. He would read all the detractors and doubters and just say "have thick skin and don't respond, unless they get personal". I took his advice and still use it to this day.

He touched my life, but I was amazed at how many other lives he impacted. Every player that he coached while coaching me, still called him "Grandpa" till the day he passed on. He may be passed on, but his legacy will last forever.
#13 Posted : Saturday, March 20, 2010 5:03:03 AM(UTC)
wonderful story thank you for sharing
#14 Posted : Saturday, March 20, 2010 5:39:22 AM(UTC)
Outstanding story Joe, and very well written.
#15 Posted : Saturday, March 20, 2010 6:46:28 AM(UTC)
Good story Joe.

You just might be a perfect fit for this place. Look around- we rag each other constantly...we fight, call each other names, etc.

We all get along incredibly well, and we went through the whole Brett thing, just like everyone else. It will also surprise and amaze just how many PC folk are here, just under a different "guise".

This is a fantastic forum, you only need to give it a week or two--seriously..
#16 Posted : Saturday, March 20, 2010 10:24:49 AM(UTC)
Arrigo, whenever a newly arrived Packer fan finds his way into this den of iniquity, I usually launch into a diatribe on the evils of cheese.
But I shall forego that for now.

Reading the narrative of your Grandfather truly touched my soul.

A man may acquired many materialistic things in his passage through life, but nothing can compare with the true legacy of what values and influence he passes on when his journey is done.
And your Grandfather lived a very rich life indeed.
The well deserved respect and admiration that you give to him is a testament to a very good life lived.
No better epitaph can be given than "He was good and honorable man".

And it looks like that values that he instilled in you, are being carried on.

I can definitely say that it would have been a true honor to have met your Grandfather.

There are some very good and knowledgeable people here, even if the vast majority are Packers fans.
And welcome to this forum. It is a pretty good place, too many cheeseheads, but overall not too bad.
#17 Posted : Saturday, March 20, 2010 5:36:55 PM(UTC)
first of all - welcome to the site, joe!

secondly - thank you for sharing so much of yourself with us. as a woman, i thought it was a rare quality to find in a man. since joining this site, i have found that to be completely untrue.

and finally - i also lost the man who taught me morals, values, my love of the packers, how to work, & how to be a loving person. i share your pain & rejoice in your memories!
#18 Posted : Saturday, March 20, 2010 8:13:50 PM(UTC)
Don't let foster fool you.. I hate everyone here, and I'm no friend of you Pucker fans!!! =P

Great story man. I know how you feel about your gramps because I feel the same for my father. I love hearing 'old' stories about other's grandparents, because their stories are always so interesting to me. I love it.

Welcome to the site, and don't get razzed too much!
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