Dan Carroll and his Chicagoland gang hosted our summer golf tournament to benefit Cub first baseman Anthony Rizzo’s Rizzo Foundation. The club took the fall off for a myriad of reasons that extended beyond the previous season’ cluster in Hertford.
Pat Darby, beloved wife of No Bats superman Ted Darby, passed away on April 27th after a gritty, gutsy, and heroic 12-year fight with ovarian cancer. Darb spearheaded the construction of the truly remarkable Pat Darby Hope Garden at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Plano in memory of beloved individual who so willingly served so many throughout the Plano community for 45 years. The garden and its waterfalls are a quiet place of spiritual reflection, a symbol of hope and renewal, as well as a fitting tribute to Pat’s strength and faith. The woman who inspired it lived with the spiritual strength and determined fortitude of all who come visit. The man who executed the vision to build it for the soulful inspiration of others is a driving force in the existence of the NBBC. Without Darb there is no NBBC. Even though he irons his socks, he remains one hell of a guy.
Tragedy struck the club again in the summer, as Smilin’ Jay Davis was riding his motorcycle on an errand to pick up his daughter from the auto repair shop when struck by a repeat offender drunk driver, who blew three times the legal intoxication limit. Smiler had his motorcycle accident on August 2nd and died on the 12th. The club looked out for his family the best we could. Smiler was one of the first guys the Chairman invited when he decided to host No Bats 1991 at Dodgertown; and from that day forward, Smiler was “all in, all the time.” Smiler didn’t have a brother growing up but found himself surrounded by fifty every time we got together. He soon started coming up with a “hairstyle of the year,” which all the guys looked forward to. Whether it was cutting a vent in his cap to allow his spiked hair to stand up, bleached with green lightning bolts, or auctioned off for the high bidder (Bill Bouie, Miami) to style however he saw fit – which proved remarkable – Smiler gave so much more than he took. A million stories and memories that man gave us, including his $20 baked potato in Bimini.