The Torrance Fencing club is a unique nonprofit fencing club dedicated to creating a community of enthusiastic sportsmen. We provide instruction in the European style of fencing and have a long history of dedicated individuals. Scroll down to learn more about our history!
The club was founded in 1963 by Gerry Laverne and Jeep Lamont who began teaching in the Torrance Cultural Art Center Auditorium as part of a charter offered by the City of Torrance. The club was headed by various members most notably one Tom Trulove in addition to the two founders and met once a week on Thursdays. Ultimately Lamont had to take leave of the club and Laverne became head president. He began a second club at West High school and ran both clubs independently until 1976. A dedicated competitive fencer named Sud Deland was recruited to the club in 1972. In 1979 Laverne began teaching in Long Beach and handed the club equipment to Deland who has had them ever since as Laverne took his leave shortly after. The 1984 Olympics inspired a program change in the club when the amateur athletic foundation was created. It funded some of the lesser known Olympic sports such as fencing and awarded new gear for the Torrance fencing club in exchange for free lessons for a year. Because of this the club was able to expand floor times from once a week to Saturdays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays. Unfortunately, the program came to an end and the club again changed, now with a twice a week meeting schedule that has remained steady ever since.
In 1984 the club also gained Deland as a committed head coach and Truelove became the club president. While standing in line to get seats for the Olympic1984 foil finals one Dick Fixler, a local fencing champion from Ohio began chatting with Sud Deand and was invited to join the club, in which he promptly became a new coach. The club was open to all enthusiasts willing to learn with lessons given freely. Open strip fencing was introduced with one box available for strip fencing and this (truly ancient piece of equipment) has lasted until the club was forced to throw it away in 2018. Andy Rivera became part of the coaching staff in 1985 and trained the successful David Duberry who gained his A rating and fenced for the US and Torrance Club in Poland for the world cup. An alumnus of the coach’s college, Jay Vadnais began as an addition to the Torrance coaches roster and began our informative beginner’s classes. A father of two successful Torrance fencers named Gordon Eng was invited to coach as well after floor coaching his daughters to win multiple tournaments. The last addition to the coaching roster came from a former student of Deland, named Nils Lambrecht who then began organizing an Epee program within the foil dominated club. In 2019 the club saw its first change since 1984 as the club has become an official Non-Profit headed by Truelove, Deland, Fixler, Lambrecht, Eng and two more training coaches, long-term fencers Scott Grossman and Rusty Mccouloch. On behalf of the Torrance fencing club, we welcome you to become part of this legacy and help grow our history!
MEET OUR COACHES
Beginner foil coach
Foot work expert
Introductory class teacher
In-house gear vendor Advanced class teacher
Fencing athletes would get no where without dedicated parents. Feel free to chat parent-to-parent with Arleen Barton who can tell you all about our community.