Herb Rosenthal, a beloved former assistant coach at Ocean View High, died from heart failure Sept. 28 at his home in Temecula.
Rosenthal, 73, impacted many high school students in the Huntington Beach area and served at Ocean View High for nearly 20 years. He coached as an assistant in softball and girls' basketball. After retiring, Rosenthal worked as a security supervisor at the school, patrolling the campus on his golf cart, former Ocean View student-athlete Cara Vanderhook said.
He lived in Huntington Beach for 32 years before moving to Temecula.
"Herb was first and foremost a wonderful friend and I know that my high school years would have not been the same without seeing him every morning when I got to school, riding around on the golf course, and always the first one out at practice with a big smile on his face," said Vanderhook, a 1998 graduate who had Rosenthal as a junior varsity basketball coach and varsity softball coach. "The world would definitely be a better place with more people like Herb in it. We have lost a true gem and I feel honored to have had him in my life."
Vanderhook said that a group of former Ocean View student-athletes have established the Herb Rosenthal Athletic Scholarship Fund, saying that the fund would be something that Rosenthal would "truly love." The scholarship fund is designed to provide funding to student-athletes who can't otherwise afford the cost to participate in high school athletics.
Vanderhook said the goal is to keep the scholarship fund as a year-round scholarship program. Various student-athletes will be awarded a scholarship each school year to cover their respective costs and allow them to participate in Seahawks athletics.
Bill Seibert was an assistant coach with Rosenthal from 1990-96 with the Ocean View girls' basketball program under Coach Ollie Martin. Seibert took over the program as head coach from 1997-99.
"Our relationship was pretty special," said Seibert, who is the head girls' basketball coach at Foothill High."I knew Herb when I was a student at Ocean View, then later as both a colleague and friend. He always cared more about the students than anything else. He put them first, even before himself. The one thing about Herb that most people don't know is that he was very competitive. He had a friendly demeanor, but was competitive and wanted to win. He sometimes took losses harder than the players and other coaches. He was a gentle giant and a great asset to the school. He will truly be missed."
Ocean View Athletic Director Tim Walsh, also a former Seahawk, was a varsity softball assistant coach with Rosenthal in the spring of 1999.
"Herb was a great human being," he said. "He wanted to be here at Ocean View to help and support the kids. He put in a lot of time and energy here and had a tremendous impact on the students."
Contributions to the Herb Rosenthal Athletic Scholarship foundation can be made through the OVHS Foundation. For information about donations, call the school at (714) 848-0656.