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St. Joseph's volleyball coach Bill Kropp at home after health scare

BIll Kropp during the Suffolk County Hall of

BIll Kropp during the Suffolk County Hall of Fame 2019 induction ceremonies at the Watermill Inn in Smithtown on Thursday. Credit: Joseph D. Sullivan

St. Joseph’s College men’s volleyball coach Bill Kropp has been discharged from Stony Brook Hospital and is home resting comfortably Friday after collapsing at the 2019 Suffolk Sports Hall of Fame induction ceremonies in Smithtown Thursday night, Hall of Fame Executive Director Chris Vaccaro said.

Kropp was one of several luminaries on hand to be inducted. The festivities were interrupted briefly until first responders stabilized him for transportation to the hospital.

"I spoke to him after he was released from Stony Brook University [Hospital] this morning and he told me he was in good spirits and good health," Vaccaro said. “He sounded fine and said he feels much better.”

“We were very happy to hear that Bill was home and resting comfortably,” Section XI Executive Director Tom Combs said. “It was quite a scare. We all hoped that he was going to be fine."

Kropp was not able to receive his plaque on Thursday and Long Island Ducks owner Frank Boulton has offered to offered to honor the coach at a home game, Vaccaro said.

“Frank Boulton said he felt so bad about what happened to Bill that he offered to honor him at an upcoming Ducks game and present him with his Hall of Fame plaque," Vaccaro said. "I think it's a wonderful idea and takes a unique situation and makes it special. He'll be honored in front of thousands of people now."

 Vaccaro said when he told Kropp of the plan, the former coach was excited.

Kropp has been a standout volleyball coach for decades in Suffolk. He coached Sachem to more than 500 wins and, three years ago, founded the St. Jospeh’s team, which he still coaches. The Golden Eagles were 25-7 this season and reached the NCAA Division III tournament.

Also inducted at the ceremonies on Thursday were broadcaster Bob Costas of Commack; NHL commissioner Gary Bettman, who went to Half Hollow Hills West High; New York Liberty star  and North Babylon High product Bria Hartley; highly-decorated wrestling coach Guy Leggio from Bay Shore; martial arts expert Jerry Figgiani of Middle Island; and Sam Kornhauser, who coached the Stony Brook football program as it elevated from Division III to Division I.

The Ward Melville boys lacrosse program received special recognition for its dominance in capturing 10 of the past 30 state titles. The New York Cuban Giants received a historic recognition award; founded in Babylon in 1885, they were the first African-American professional baseball club in history. And special recognition awards went to Long Island natives

Half Hollow Hills High alum Scott Beigel and West Islip native Aaron Feis – who both perished last February trying to protect students in the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High in Parkland, Fla., received special recognition awards.

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