General James Horner (Jim)
United States of America
Huntingdon, Huntingdon County, Pennsylvania, United States of America
Pinellas County, Florida, United States of America


Mr. Vuille was born in Huntingdon, Pa., in 1909 and moved to St. Petersburg with his family in 1915. He began playing tennis in 1919 at the Sunshine City Tennis Club at Mirror Lake, where the high bounce off concrete courts contributed to his unconventional grip on the racket.

His "frying pan," or "Western" grip provided a ton of topspin for the opponent to handle, and contrasted with the classic handshake grip that was taught.

"He probably had one of the greatest forehands anywhere," Bushman said. "He just measured that ball, and he could play with some of the best players in the country at that time. The man was phenomenal."

Today, the Western grip is by far the most widely taught grip for young players.

As a senior at St. Petersburg High School in 1926, Mr. Vuille's team won a state championship. He graduated from Cornell University in 1930 with a degree in chemistry and a math minor.

The 1929 stock market crash knocked out the job he had lined up. He operated a speedboat for tourists for several years and did research for Pennsylvania Glass Sand Corp. He served with the Army during World War II in North Africa, Italy, France and Germany as a triage medic, carrying a tennis racket and a can of balls in his backpack. In three years, he had just two opportunities to play.

Mr. Vuille became manager of the St. Petersburg Tennis Center in 1947, the same year he married Janet Sutor. He turned pro a year later and taught at the club until 1952, when he stepped aside. In 1957, Jim and Janet Vuille became the first husband and wife to each win singles titles for the city tournament in the same year.

He joined the seniors ranks officially as a 45-year-old in 1954, and remained one of the country's best amateur players in his age group for the next 50 years. In the 1960s, he was appointed to a task force on red tide and was assigned to study vitamin B12 concentrations in seawater.

A couple of summers, Mr. Vuille, his wife and five children packed up the car and took cross-country camping trips out west.

Mr. Vuille returned as club manager from 1974 to 1984. He remained among the top players in his age group nationally until 2004, when he was ranked eighth in the 90-and-older group. In 2009, the Florida United States Tennis Association inducted Mr. Vuille into its hall of fame.


Archive statistics 1936 - 1960

Tournaments Masters Invitation - 1960 Florida West Coast - 1958 Dixie Championships - 1956 Florida West Coast - 1956 Florida West Coast - 1955 Dixie Championships - 1954 Colorado Championship - 1953 Dixie Championships - 1952 Dixie Championships - 1951 Dixie Championships - 1950 Florida West Coast - 1950 Dixie Championships - 1949 Florida West Coast - 1949 Dixie Championships - 1948 Florida West Coast - 1948 Dixie Championships - 1947 Dixie Championships - 1946 Dixie Championships - 1942 Dixie Championships - 1941 Florida West Coast - 1941 Dixie Championships - 1939 Tampa Terrace Invitation - 1939 Dixie Championships - 1938 Lakeland Open Championships - 1938 Florida West Coast - 1938 Dixie Championships - 1937 Dixie Championships - 1936

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