June 20, 2021

LETTER: ‘The Boys of Summer’

From Ron Dunphy, Creston

Although to use the jargon “The Boys of Summer” might refer to the Brooklyn Dodgers, today I wish to apply the jargon to the Creston Pee Wees and the Creston Midgets’ team records of the 1950s as reported in the Creston News Advertiser back then. Our community decades ago honored the person largely responsible for those youthful records at the Bill Sears Baseball Complex.

The start of America’s favorite sporting season should include a review of the records of pre-Panther youthful exercises in summer fun and kinship. The two previous recent summers I have been given the assistance of Midge Scurlock and former Gibson Memorial Director David Hargrove, but David abandoned “Pantherland” before the project was completed, partly to blame — COVID-19!

Honestly, I have been aided by the sharing of Tom Hertz’s wife’s memorabilia of a scrapbook kept by Mrs. Gene Hertz back in the day. Also, much was rediscovered using the outdated microfiche equipment at the library.

To begin: the talented individuals comprising those teams are dwindling in numbers as nature has taken its toll. So many are deceased! And that provides the encouragement to write today.

A “box score” reveals much: “at bats, hits, walks, runs scored” and possibly errors. If you wish, I have many box scores for the 1957 season that would include the following players:

Dean Conley, Larry Seckington, Jom Monahan, Brady Miler, Tom Hertz, Lee McNichols, Hoagy Bullock, Duane and Cleo Abbot, Mike Bretnall, Bruce James, Jack Kelley, Rich Monahan, David Daughton, Kirk Herbert and Larry Jaundry.

Besides the unpaid efforts of Coach Sears, there was also the encouragement from sometimes coach Rollin Dwyer and newspaper writers Max Sandeman and sports enthusiast Howard “Brownie” Brown.

This recognition being 60 years late!

Ron Dunphy, Class of ‘60