By Mickey Furfari
For The Register-Herald
Ron LaNeve, a former men’s basketball player at West Virginia University in the 1950s, spent 52 years working in U.S. Public Health Services.
He was a consultant in various health programs covering six states. His background was in physical therapy, and he’s still involved as a health servant.
“What I’m doing now is going into homes of people just released from a hospital and perform physical therapy so the people can stay home and not have to go elsewhere for treatment.”
LaNeve grew up in Newell, and was a basketball star in that community’s high school. But he now is a resident of Elkins.
As a two-time all-state player, LaNeve scored an amazing 64 points for Newwell in a game against New Cumberland on Feb. 5, 1951.
“I made 31 of 35 shots that night,” he remembers.
LaNeve had to play on a freshman team in 1952, as required then by the NCAA, and he was the top scorer with about 18 points a game. Quentin Barnette coached the team.
He was a 6-foot-2, 175-pound guard when joining coach Red Brown’s varsity team as a sophomore in 1953. But LaNeve had to sit out in 1954 when injuring his left knee seriously in the season’s opening game against Navy.
So he finished his career playing two years under new head coach Fred Schaus.
LaNeve, who has a degree in physical therapy and a master’s degree in public health, admittedly enjoys his work very much.
He and wife “Michy” were college sweethearts at WVU and have been married for 55 years.
“We still are sweethearts,” Ron said.
They have three grown sons. Stephen, the oldest, has incorporated company that’s called Regan. Scott works in the same field, and Todd is an attorney in Clarksburg.
LaNeve and his wife were in Morgantown last Saturday for the second annual reunion of the WVU men’s basketball players. Both have remained very supportive of the university since graduating.
Ron served as president of the Emeritus Club in 2000 and 2007. He also is proud of the fact that he was elected governor of Rotary Clubs in District 7530 in northern West Virginia in 1991-92.
LaNeve said he also enjoyed a brief stint playing basketball in the military ranks.