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  • Jim Townsend

Volunteer Spotlight: John Vallier

Last month we started a new monthly piece at The Portland Beacon focusing on volunteers right here in our community. People that go above and beyond to help charities or organizations in Portland and ask for nothing in return.

Most of the best volunteers never seek attention or recognition for their hard work. They simply show up, do what needs to be done, and go about their day. They are in it for others and for the community as a whole, and not for personal gain.

This month’s Volunteer Spotlight is on John Vallier.

Mr. Vallier was nominated by St. Patrick School Athletic Director Patrick Russman.

Russman’s nomination of Mr. Vallier said, “He has been an outstanding pillar of the St. Patrick Community through his decades long commitment to the St. Patrick basketball programs by keeping book. He also has helped both schools upgrade their scoreboards with his connections with Tri-County. He is an outstanding recruiter for the Portland Knights of Columbus.”

Russman added that, “He is always helpful but stays back out of the limelight.”

St. Patrick girls basketball coach Al Schrauben said of Vallier, “He has been our scorekeeper for years. Sometimes referees have said that maybe he doesn’t need to be so vocal, but he is a great help to our programs. He always has a story to tell that keeps like interesting.”

Shamrock baseball coach Bryan Scheurer said, “He's a perfect example of ‘volunteer.’ The man does anything and everything he can to help our school(s), parish & community. He was a Portland youth league coach for decades, coached on the varsity baseball staff at St Patrick's, participates in numerous fundraisers for both local schools, has done books/clock for decades for SPS, has set up lodging for SP football with Engadine, volunteer altar server/eucharistic minister as masses/funerals, is constantly on the road and support of our kid's teams (if he's not directly involved in the sport). Most importantly, he never takes a win for granted, always around to celebrate those good times with family and friends, and since he's just like family to all, he's around celebrating a lot!”

Shamrock boys basketball coach Mark Scheurer added of Mr. Vallier, “He is a man who is known throughout the town as Mr. Vallier, Johnny V, or that man who keeps the score book for the girls and boys basketball team. He is the man responsible for contacting Tri County Electric for the Scoreboards that were donated to both Portland High School and Saint Patrick. He has had Tri County, having worked there for years until retirement, move field goal posts, set poles, scoreboards, bury lines, and anything else.”

Mark Scheurer went on to say, “His kids attended Saint Patrick and grandkids attend both Saint Patrick and Portland Schools. He will do whatever is asked of him to help kids love sports like he does. He is the epitome of volunteer. He puts on fish fries for teams and opponents after contests. He gives because he cares and loves to see kids participate in extracurricular activities and will do what he needs to help out. He replaced an overhead door at the Grove by the baseball field because in his words, ‘It needed to be done!’ I think that phrase alone sums him up, he does things for others because he wants to and it needed to be done! He is a one of a kind Yooper and we are lucky to have him in Portland! I am proud to have him as a friend! He would do anything for you!”

Mr. Vallier’s son Chris said, “I feel like my dad helps anyone he can because it makes you feel good to help and who doesn’t like to feel good about yourself at the end of the day. Also, I learned as a young kid that while helping my dad with stuff that you just never know when you may need something and if you help others, just maybe someone will repay you in time of need. Not that my dad ever asked for help, but people will help when asked. My dad is also big into his faith, family and community, and the more you are involved the more all those things work together is how I was taught and raised.”

Thank you for all you do for our community Mr. Vallier.

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