Larry Dierker Chapter meeting recap – 11/20/2017

On Monday night, November 20, 2017, thirty-four faithful SABR members of the Larry Dierker Chapter shared a moment in time through a newly produced documentary A Long Way Home documenting the struggles and determination of 10 former major league players of color who just wanted to play professional baseball. Our audience was captivated by the passionate stories and experiences of these men as they discussed the many obstacles they were forced to endure.

Grover “Deacon” Jones, a former Chicago White Sox player and major league coach with the Astros and Padres featured in the documentary, joined us and was gracious enough to answer questions. Jones, who grew up in New York had never faced segregation until, after college, he signed a professional baseball contract. “Deacon” admits that he was almost driven out of the game he loved by the persecution, threats on his life and being made to feel ashamed of who he was.

As with many of our meetings, you had to be there to totally appreciate the magnitude of the experience.

Dick Bily regaled us with personal stories about George Steinbrenner and their friendship. Dick also provided a trivia contest with 6 questions about George and awarded the winners of each question a beautiful replica World Series ring for each of George’s championship years.

Tom White presented his challenging trivia contest won by Robert Beck.

Marsha Franty was recognized as the winner of our 2017 Astros Win Contest where she correctly predicted the ‘Stros would win 101 games. Good job Marsha.

Our next meeting will be held on December 18, besides our speakers, we need to discuss future chapter leadership. With Jim Kreuz moving to Arkansas we need members to step up to leadership positions such as Event Planning, New Member Welcome, Recruiting Speakers, Updating Name Tags, Agendas, the Trivia Contest, Website Coordination etc. For this chapter to continue to prosper we need members to step up.

What role would you be willing to fulfill in 2018?

To all, have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

— Bob Dorrill