By Pedro Cruz
Wrestling and gymnastics founder Donald “Wayne” Skill died at age 87, due to complications of Alzheimer’s disease on Feb .12.
Skill started the wrestling and gymnastics programs at LBCC in 1958, teaching physiology and anatomy until his retirement in 1989. Born and raised in Long Beach, he completed his Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts at UCLA in physical education and doctoral work at USC. After 31 years at LBCC, he spent the last 24 years in Sequim, Wash.
In spring 2012, he returned to walk the campus of Long Beach City College where he received a warm reception from his former colleagues. “The coaches were so gracious to him,” said his wife, Sharon, “he was on top of the world for days.”
A true renaissance man, the World War II and Korean War veteran played classical bagpipes, became a sailor in his retirement (living on his sailboat until building his retirement home) and maintained a life-long commitment to his own physical fitness. Skill worked out at the gym each day, up until five months prior to his death.
He also is survived by his, step-sons David and Anthony Stiner, and his brother Neil Skill. The family requests that contributions be made toward a scholarship in his memory through the LBCC Foundation (B-12, 4901 E. Carson St., Long Beach, 90808).