There was so much pent up frustration, depression, loneliness, and overall anxiety to get finished with the three-year stay in Berlin, that I had to release it in some other way than becoming an alcoholic, drinking my problems away. Sports, mainly fast-pitch softball was my game! On this page are some photos of other teams, and our 1967 Championship team, which defeated the Air Force for the European theater fast pitch softball number one title.
ABOVE: The 1967 European Theater Championship softball team from the 54th USASASOC in Berlin. (Yeah, they were too cheap to buy new uniforms.) Back row, L-R: Sgt. Pratt; Tim Russell; Sgt. Phelps; Frank Tiriolo; Paul Karr; Danny Tarbutton; Myself. Bottom row, L-R: John Meyer; Sgt. Shipes; Dave Gilliland; Tom Rogers, and Ron Anderson.
I'm not a ham, really! I am so glad that I've got photographic memories of myself, friends, teammates, places and locales throughout Berlin. I wish I had taken more. I hope when the time comes and my memory fails, my eyes can still see. I might not know what the hell I am looking at, but I can still see my old fast ball zinger, while Ron Anderson, second base, looks on. This freeze action shot was taken by a former MP buddie. Thanks Cecil, I sincerely hope all is well and good with you and yours!
The two action cameo shots above, and the team here at right were from 1965. Being a relative newk I didn't know many names. The guy sliding into home plate in the above photo is on the back row, second from left, in the team photo. The first guy sitting on the bench on the left was the pitcher, Doug, and the second guy from him was Ron Anderson. Beyond that, I'm lost. I shot some photos of the guys in 1965, but I didn't participate on the team until the next two years.
1966 ASA team, top row,
L-R: Myself, Tom (The Kid) Rogers; ???; Tim (Twiggy Russell); Ralph (Buffalo Head) Vitale; Frank (The Arm) Tiriolo; Sgt. (Smiles) Pratt. Bottom row, L-R: Sgt. (Bow-Wow) Bowser; ???; ???; Ron (The Mouth) Anderson; Pudgy Matthews; Dave (The Schnoz) Gilliland; Lt. (Crash) Smith. I never could figure out why Smith was in this photo. He never coached or played. I guess he just wanted to be famous.
RIGHT:Sgt. Twiggy makes a flying catch, but number 59 is safe by a mile. In my opinion Tim Russell, from Florida, was a great all around athlete who played softball, baseball, basketball, golf, table tennis, and tiddly winks! I hope he kept re-upping, because the Agency needed a good head like Twiggy to keep good order and common sense in a military world of unrealities. Tim was a real person!
BELOW: "The Kid" (Tom Rogers) rounds first base in a game against hospital company in 1966. Tom was my catcher for two years, the foundation and "rock" of the team. Couldn't have done it without you Tommygun!
Once upon a time in 1967 our ASA softball team went to Bad Aibling, Germany for a softball tournament. WE WON!
In photo at left Dave Gilliland, our 1st baseman, shakes Sgt. Shipes' hand after he belted a two-run homer to win the game. BELOW: Gilliland belts down one of his own, a cold liter of Bad Aibling ale from the Maxlrain Brewery.
After a few years as a sheriff, (pictured here in a recent
photo), Davey Boy settled down into a less stressful. and
little milder line of work selling insurance. Look out,
he'll be calling on you soon. If you dont' buy, he will
either lock you up, or shoot you! Cheers, Schnoz!
The sports teams kept the brass busy handing out trophies. I believe these two photos of the 1966 flag football team have pretty much the same guys in them, except the bottom one, in which the brass, Colonel Smith, and Lt. Mallot got their faces in one of the shots too. And, since there are name tags on all the guys I don't need to identify them. I believe this photo of mine was also used on FSBVG, and does have all the i.d.'s on it. Honestly, I forgot half of the names, but I still remember the mugs.
Photo Page Acht