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August 01, 2003 - Image 93

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2003-08-01

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The Coach


en Bertin has to be pulled
Rosen, head of volleyball for the
away from other pursuits to
1984 Maccabi Games in Detroit,
coach volleyball.
who told Bertin, "You need to
A financial planner since 1970, he
coach." Bertin took over as head
also dabbles in marine biology, tropi-
coach for the 1990 games in Detroit.
cal fish, the Edumentor Program at
In the '90s, he fielded boys teams,
Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills
girls teams and coed teams for
schools and Cranbrook, astronomy,
Maccabi. And for the '98 games in
diving, organizing the Detroit
Detroit, he added beach volleyball.
Mumford High School Class of 1964
"We did it because you would only
reunions and playing volleyball.
need a total of seven on a team, but
As the volunteer Detroit Maccabi
it only lasted one more year," Bertin
volleyball coach since 1990, the only
said. The mentality in the U.S. is
time he has missed the games in the
that boys should be playing football
last 13 years was to view an eclipse of and basketball, and girls play volley-
the sun — in Turkey. He has
viewed eclipses in India,
Bertin is one of four mem-
Ken Bertin
Africa twice, Aruba, Canada
of the volleyball group
addre sses the
and briefly considered going
national Jewish
te am.
to an eclipse next year in
Community Centers
Antarctica, "but the cost was
Association sports advisory
prohibitive and I didn't want
committee. One of his
to spend 28 days on a Russian
favorite Maccabi memories is besting
a fellow committeeman with a rule
Instead, he's going to Greece to see
Venus pass across the sun "for only
"I call it the famous Kick episode,"
the fifth time since the telescope was
Bertin laughed.
Detroit was playing Chicago in the
Bertin began playing "jungle rules"
gold medal game a few years ago
(anything goes) volleyball in the
when Detroiter Allison Surowitz
Army in 1968-70 while serving in
saved a point by kicking the ball
Korea and Germany. Bob Tarnow
before it hit the floor. The ball went
and Marty Melton recruited him
to the net, where it was spiked, set-
from B'nai B'rith softball to help
ting up Detroit's game-winning serve.
organize a B'nai B'rith volleyball
Under high school rules, the kick
league. Sam Skeegan "really taught
would not have been allowed, but the
me the game" and Bertin became
games were being played under
involved in recreation leagues in
national rules. With every coach
Walled Lake and Huntington Woods. thumbing the rule books, Detroit
It was Detroit Maccabi's David
won the medal. _

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