In Raleigh, a requiem for a fan

From Luke DeCock at the Raleigh News & Observer on September 29, 2012, with mention of SABR member Robert Gorman:

It could have happened to anyone, any fan, at any time. It just happened to be Kay Stallings sitting in that seat.

Stallings didn’t have to stick around after East Carolina was eliminated from the NCAA baseball tournament, but it was a lovely June afternoon at North Carolina’s Boshamer Stadium, and he wasn’t the only member of the purple-clad crowd to stay behind and watch the Tar Heels play St. John’s that Sunday.

And that’s where he was, along the first-base line, when a foul ball came screaming straight into the stands. It was one of those ugly moments every baseball fan dreads, the foul ball coming into the seats on a flat line, no time to react. It hit Stallings in the face.


Stallings is the first baseball fan known to have been killed by a foul ball since 2010, said Robert Gorman, a Winthrop University librarian and author of “Death at the Ballpark,” and the 114th to die after being hit by a foul ball or ball thrown into the stands at a major-league, minor-league or amateur game since 1862.

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Originally published: October 1, 2012. Last Updated: October 1, 2012.