Softball Player Profile:  Roger Wisslead

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A native of Warsaw, Illinois, Roger Wisslead could stand on the banks of the Mississippi and see Illinois, Iowa and Missouri just by turning his head. He was a four-year letterman as a defensive back in football and a pole vaulter and sprinter on the Warsaw Wildcats track team. After graduating from high school, he earned a degree in physical education with a minor in political science from Sterling (KS) College. Roger played on the Warriors football team (again as a defensive back) and the track team specializing in the 220- and 440-meter relays and in pole vaulting.

Roger worked construction briefly before being hired for his first “real job” as a social worker for Reno County in Hutchinson, Kansas. He decided this would be his new career path and took courses in psychology and sociology to become better qualified in the field. Over the next 35 years, he held various positions in child welfare-type roles, including child welfare investigator, state juvenile officer, teenage foster care coordinator and child protective services investigator. His career led him to positions in Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Hawaii and Arizona. He retired from Arizona’s CPS program in 2005. Since then, he’s worked part time as a security officer, as a transporter of juveniles requiring court-ordered supervision for CPS and as a personal trainer. Roger says that he really enjoyed his profession and hopes that he helped a lot of kids and families along the way. He also said that, at times, his job became a little too exciting; he’s been shot at, almost run over by a car and been threatened many times when performing his duties. “Parts of the jobs were like a police officer, but I didn’t have a gun,” he noted.

Softball has been a big part of Roger’s life since 1969 when he played for a company team in Colorado. Over the years, he’s played on many teams where he was “the old man” playing alongside 20-somethings. He’s been a member of many tournament championship teams and still plays on multiple travel teams, including the Prescott Scorpions, the So-Cal Sons of Pitches and Franklin Financial Services teams and, of course, Sun Lakes-based tournament squads. In our regular Sun Lakes League, Roger is one of our top hitters, finishing third in homeruns and in the Top Ten in average this past year.

Luckily, Roger is happily married to Ceci who loves watching him play and enjoys traveling to the various tournament locations with him. He says senior softball is really an extended family or fraternity, and he enjoys the camaraderie as much as the game itself.

Roger and Ceci enjoy traveling to see various family members, including his son and family in Arkansas as well Ceci’s nine siblings and too many cousins to count! They also enjoy vacations to Hawaii and, this fall, they’re expanding their travel horizons with a two-week trip to Greece. (Just make sure to get back for softball season, Roger!)