Al De La Torre
Palo Alto Elks Club
Inducted as a Contributor in 1987
By Don Davies, edited by Geoff Capell.
Al has been an active supporter of Northern California for many years. He possesses many skills that made him successful. He was an excellent communicator in a very positive way. He was compassionate and sincere. He had an excellent grasp of the English Language as well as the Spanish language. Al possesses excellent character and was a true loyal friend to handball. It was Al who worked with me from 1975-80 with the administrative duties of our newly organized Northern California Handball Association. We spent many hours back then helping a great group of people get the organization moving. Al was always willing to help and took over many responsibilities. He was truly dedicated to doing whatever it took to foster the growth of handball.
Al eventually took over the association from me. He has, which most of the rest of us do not, the dedication to teaching and helping players improve their games especially with the youth. He has the unique coaching talent to be able to observe the weaknesses, and strengths, the form problems and the strategies of the game.
Al contacted a virus in his heart lining back in 1981 and almost died. To this date he has had three different hearts and his fighting ability and competitiveness have kept him alive. Through this ordeal I never once saw Al get discouraged, depressed or lose faith. It was almost as if he was still encouraging us instead of the reverse. He is a true believer in life and handball.