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Keep A-Goin': The Life of Lone Star Dietz Paperback – April 1, 2006

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 356 pages
  • Publisher: Tuxedo Press (April 1, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0977448606
  • ISBN-13: 978-0977448609
  • Product Dimensions: 10 x 8 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,032,414 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

On the surface it might appear that nothing Tom Benjey had done previous to writing Keep A-goin': the life of Lone Star Dietz prepared him for such a task. On the other hand everything he had done before may have readied him for the project. The second of ten children, he grew up in a home of modest means in a small town in downstate Illinois where he operated the family bicycle shop while in high school. He attended Northwestern University on scholarship for just one year before taking an all-expenses-paid trip to the Far East courtesy of the taxpayers. After maintaining the weapons control system on F-102 aircraft in the Philippines, Viet Nam and Thailand, he took advantage of the GI Bill and enrolled at Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville. Eight years after earning his B.S. in Mathematics he completed an M.S. in Computer Science at Shippensburg State College. Utilizing his decade of software development experience he operated a systems house for most of the 1980s. Timing the opportunity to live abroad to coincide perfectly with the fall of the Berlin Wall, he taught computer studies for the University of Maryland European Division for two years. After that he completed a Ph.D. degree in Mathematics Education at Indiana University.

Tom and his wife and research assistant, Ann, share a Pennsylvania German limestone farmhouse with their cat, Ryan. The unspoiled feline allows them to live in his house as a reward for their efforts in restoring it for him.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Red_One43 on May 20, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The only things I knew about William Lone Star Dietz was that he was a former Redskin coach for two seasons, had an average record and that the Redskins were named for him. I never gave it much thought that the Redskins were named in honor of him. That's what I read, so it was gospel truth as far as I was concerned. A discussion website led me to wonder why would George Preston Marshall,owner and founder of the Washington Redskins,would name his team after a coach who ended up only coaching two seasons and didn't have a winning record. To me, this man, Dietz, must have been one special man for Marshall to so honor. When I learned of the Book, Keep A - goin' The life of Lone Star Dietz by Tom Benjey, I had to get it and find out about this man called Lone Star.

There is an old proverb that says, "A man is known by the company he keeps." Some of William Lone Star's best friends were Knute Rockne, Glen "Pop" Warner, Jim Thorpe. Let's listen what these immortals of football history had to say about Dietz. Knute Rockne said, "I consider him one of the greatest coaches in the game...." Pop Warner said, "Jim Thorpe, Lone Star ... still rank among the all-time stars of football." Why are Rockne, Warner and Thorpe household names and not Dietz when it comes to football?

George Preston Marshall,the Redskins franchise founder and owner, named the franchise in honor of him, but how did Marshall see him after he only coached two seasons? Marshall described Dietz as "a genius innovative, brilliant strategist."

Just who was this William Lone Star Dietz who was held in such high esteem by giants in football history?
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Alejandra Vernon HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 18, 2007
Format: Hardcover
This biography of Lone Star Dietz, artist, football coach, and man of mystery, is a fascinating journey through a complex life, and must have been a monumental work for author Benjey to research, and to sift through the myth, truth, and supposition, of some things that perhaps even Lone Star himself didn't for a certainty know, like the hidden secrets that surrounded his heritage. The peaks and valleys of his life, coupled with his 2 marriages, the first to Native American artist Angel DeCora, thirteen years his senior (which in the early part of the 20th century was considered somewhat scandalous), his legal problems concerning his citizenship as American or Indian and how it related to the WWI "Slacker" charge, would make a stupendous television miniseries, that would keep us riveted to the screen, as one is riveted to the pages of this book.

Author Tom Benjey's writing style is fluid and eloquent, but at the same time comfortable and immediate, as if he were relating this captivating tale in your living room. Chapter 12, on how World War I started and what happened in America while it was being fought, is superb; it is a reminder to those of us who know history, and to those who don't, and who think we are currently "losing our freedom," an eye-opener and a great lesson to be learned. There are many themes in this biography to hold one's interest: The early years of college football and sports in general, told in a way that even a "sports ignoramus" like me can appreciate, Native American studies and art, and so much more, all tied to the exciting if chaotic life of Lone Star Dietz.

The black and white illustrations are fabulous, done mostly by Lone Star or his wife Angel DeCora.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Grady Harp HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 1, 2007
Format: Hardcover
'Keep A-Goin': The Life of Lone Star Dietz' is a revelation to many of us, an absorbing biography of an important figure in American history who like so many other significant people comes to general public knowledge only with the publication of a carefully researched and well-written biography such as this fine book by Tom Benjey. Presented in an almost scrapbook style, the writing accompanied by a plethora of drawings and photographs that add immensely to the flow of the story as well as serving as physical documentation of fascinating life.

Lone Star Dietz was born in 1885, the son of an American Indian woman and a German father, a man who suffered the prejudices of being a half breed, a man who was discredited by his refusing to enter the armed forces during WW I, yet a gifted artist and athlete and actor and showman who added immeasurably to the manner in which football is played today, who elevated the regard for native American art, and who was a mover who helped launch the now famous Rose Bowl football games that brought success to the popular Rose Parade that began its ongoing New Year's Day spotlight in 1915!

One would think that a man of so many talents would be a household name in this country: certainly his achievements and colorful lifestyle merit such renown. But it takes a champion such as Tom Benjey to place him so fully before us. Benjey's no-nonsense writing style offers the facts and the photos, the trials and the art, and the rather overzealous exposition (for the non-sports minded reader) of Dietz' contributions to the game of football. But for this reader the aspect of this publication hat makes it a delight to read is the Epilogue at the end of the book where Benjey addresses us, the reader, with his own thoughts about Dietz' controversial life.
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