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5th Annaul Illinois ASA Hall of Fame

March 31st At The Dragons Dome In Pekin

(L-R) Joey Rich, Ron Radigonda and Wayne Myers

The Illinois ASA held its 5th Annual Hall of Fame induction Banquet at the Dragon's Dome facility in Pekin on March 31st with nine individuals and six teams entering into their honored hall. More than three hundred and twenty-five people attend this year's celebration.
The night's master of ceremonies was Dan Highland from Normal who kept the evening moving along at a quick yet interesting pace after dinner had been served.
The Illinois A.S.A. Hall of Fame plague presented to each individual reads; 'The Illinois Hall of Fame Amateur Softball Association of America in recognition of an outstanding career in softball the highest honor attainable in the Illinois A.S.A. followed by an individual's name.
The first person stepping to the microphone was Alan Vogelsang who introduced his deceased friend and former teammate Marvin Mennenga a pitcher, by saying, "Slow pitch softball was designed to be a hitter's game, and Marv took that as a challenge".
Marvin Mennenga award was accepted by the wife Pat and his youngest son
Marty with Pat Mennenga reading from a poem written by one of Marvin's
friends about his coaching of young people by saying, "It is imposable to know how many life's you have touched, but to those of us who knew you, you meant so much. You could take a kid from no where who never would have had a chance but because of your guidance they all learned to dance."
Mike Martin presented his friend Charles Hall (C/OF) by saying, "Charlie was very fast and agile he batted left handed and always swung with all his might often doing a 360 in the batters box. At one national tournament he went 7 for 16 with 2 home runs." Charles Hall said, "I like to thank all the ball players that I played with and we had a lot of fun playing ball when we were younger. Thank you."
Martin also introduced his brother Cliff by saying, 'Cliff always managed to back up first base on an infield hit ball. Cliff played (softball) for some twenty five years."
In accepting his place in the Hall of Fame Cliff Martin said, "It's been sixty some years since I started in softball but I still follow all the tournaments locally when I can. Thank you."
Hall of Famer, Jerry Stewart presented manager Barrett Rochman from
Carbondale by saying, "When he put a team on the field it was a team. They played hard and he worked them hard and I learned to respect Barrett Rochman. We had disagreements but we always end up being friends by the end of the day."
Rochman said, "I hope that Chuck McCord can forgive you for what you are doing tonight by honoring me. God bless, I would not be here if he still was." Right on cue a violent thunderstorm erupted outside with a near deadening roar.
Master of Ceremony Highland spoke in reference to the loud thunderstorm that stuck during Rochman acceptance speech by saying, "Barrett this is the fifth time we have had this banquet. The weather has always been beautiful; it seems that McCord is a little pissed off tonight. Remember he is the softball lord here in Illinois."

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