It was heartening to read that tonight, before the New York Mets-Houston Astros game at Shea Stadium, there will be a ceremony to mark the induction of Gil Hodges into the United States Marine Corps Sports Hall of Fame.
I had only known Gil Hodges as the manager of the New York Mets (including the world champion 1969 team); I was too young to enjoy his exploits as a member of the beloved Brooklyn Dodgers. Gil managed the Mets starting in 1968 and up until his death from a heart attack just prior to the start of the 1972 season, at which point Yogi Berra took over as manager. But I knew that Gil was a man of class and dignity and grace and I just thought it was a damn shame that he had to leave us so soon. Even at the age of 11 I knew that. So, it's glad to see that Gil is getting this honor for all he meant to several generations of baseball fans.