Thursday, December 23, 2021

RIP Perry Price. A Softball interview.

 Here is a video of an interview I did with Perry Price at the 1989 USSSA Championships. 64 teams gathered that had made it through qualifying rounds to be the best of the best. We had Jimmy Rodgers (RF), Doug Weatherbee 3B, Barry Oliver RCF, Otis Kane 1st, Jeff Tehan LCF, Ronnie Webb LF, Roland West C, Mike SS, Bob Sprague 2B and yours truly pitching. Perry maneuvered us through constant banter. We ended up in 3rd place in the state with Ronnie Webb and Roland West making the all state team. We still are the highest placing team from Humboldt in a USSSA state championship. 

Perry was more than a friend to me, he was a mentor on many facets of life. He was passionate in his beliefs and never sugarcoated anything. He was a purchasing agent for the City of Eureka and was able to help me understand City agency workings and how politics work hands on. Had many memorable times hanging out in Redding, Grants Pass, Medford, Sacramento and Reno. Robin and I hung out with Perry and Linda clubbing and going to shows.  

Perry also found obscure softball tournaments for James Hill to play in. Columbus Tournament in Reno, Los Molinas Invitational, Central Valley Tournament and Sacramento Tournaments. Perry also was the only manager who did not care who we played first game. He figured we had to beat them sometime! (That didn't go so good one time where we were matched up with Team Demarini!) We won at every level. Even when we were all older and in our last year as James Hill we won the Eureka A league over Latner's to close out a great run. We then won the last big Grants Pass end of the year tournament before it morphed into something else. 

And memories? How about a brawl at Red Bluff Cowboy tournament? Perry had this great idea of us coaching a 3rd grade Hoopster team with his son Brandon and my son Jacob playing together? Perry scared the heck out of the other kids by yelling at Jake and Brandon calling them Knuckleheads. One of the kids I see from that team say they were traumatized and never played again. In the playoffs we were playing Eureka Parks and Recreation Director Dan Molter's team and Perry lost it and was yelling at Laurie Vance, a ref that I actually trained. She gave Perry a technical and when he wouldn't shut up, she called the game. Laurie's boyfriend came down from the stands to let Perry know he was not happy. Perry was ready to go fists........with Jr Albers! I was able to help try to calm things down, but it left everyone at Jacob's Gym something to remember! And there was time he dissed Lester Hayes of the Raiders, was able to score VP passes for Reno Show with all the perks, caused riot at Pop Warner game and the many times he organized BBQ for teams on the road. 

A few years ago he had some type of brain trauma that he ended up recovering from. I went and visited him at rehab home. He recovered and it was like he was new again! This gave him a few more years. But another brain issue finally took him to that great big diamond in the sky.