Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Harmon Killebrew and Me

On August 21, 1987, I attended the Red Sox / Twins game in Boston with a Roof Box ticket. This was prior to the upper deck renovations at Fenway Park that included the 406 (née 600) Club and the new press box.

In those days, roof ticket holders could walk behind the press box but couldn't get to within thirty or so feet of it. I was feeling lucky that night, and after the game, I hung out near the gate to the restricted press area.

Within a few minutes, my intuition bore fruit as Harmon Killebrew, who was working the Twins broadcast, stepped outside and walked behind the box.

I hollered something polite to him, and to my delight, he went out of his way to come over to me. I asked him to sign my ticket stub, which he did with pleasure. He also took an interest in me, and he asked me where I was from and generally chatted me up for a few minutes.

I was always impressed with that interaction, especially in light of other experiences I've had or have heard about with other Hall of Famers. Brief encounters can often leave lasting impressions.

Harmon died this morning. I've read several accounts of how friendly and unassuming he was. The best part was that he didn't have to try to be like that. It's just the way he was.
©2011 Douglas T. Dinsmoor



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