North Adams Babe Ruth League christens the Richard "Dick" Lefebvre Field
Photo Gallery | Richard 'Dick' Lefebvre baseball field dedicated
NORTH ADAMS — With about 150 friends, family and players looking on, the ballfield at the Daniel Alcombright Athletic Complex was christened the Richard "Dick" Lefebvre Field Sunday morning.
The morning also marked Opening Day for the North Adams Babe Ruth League. A tripleheader featuring all six member teams was played, according to NABRL President Quinn Gladu.
Lefebvre was a longtime umpire and supporter of a number of civic organizations, including Babe Ruth, according to Gladu. He lived, according to Mayor Richard Alcombright, a few dozen yards beyond the ballfield.
"He and his family lived over there, on Taft Street," said Alcombright, pointing to a house with green siding built within a stone's throw of the field' outfield fence.
Alcombright was the guest speaker for the dedication ceremony.
"Dick was a wonderful guy," said Alcombright. Later, in his remarks to the audience, he described Lefebvre as an "amazing husband, father, grandfather, neighbor and friend to countless North Adams residents."
Alcombright added that Lefebvre and his wife Joan raised six children and "embodied the proud family upbringing that the Greylock section of town was, and still is, known for.
"He would be so very proud of this day, not because of his name on this field, but there are young, aspiring athletes and families getting together for a baseball game," lauded Alcombright.
"He was a great guy," agreed Babe Ruth umpire George Beckwith of Lefebvre. "He used to umpire here while back. He always followed his children when they were playing [sports]. But even after they had grown, he loved to come down to the field and watch the games."
Alcombright noted that Lefebvre was a very dedicated family man. He died in 2013, while Joan died year later. This year would have been the couple's 60th wedding anniversary.
Lefebvre's six children and their children were at the event. So Jon threw out the first pitch for the first game.
Gladu was the emcee for the Opening Day ceremonies. First, she read a list of the six teams and their coaches. Then she played a recording of the "Star-Spangled Banner." She thanked the sponsors, parents and volunteers who helped ensure the league continued from year to year.
The six teams have players from North Adams, Adams, Cheshire, Savoy, Williamstown, Lanesborough and Bennington, Vt., on their rosters. Bennington joined few years ago, after the league in which hey played in Vermont folded, according to Michael Gladu, Quinn's husband and a league volunteer.
The day was grey, with temperatures in the mid-40s. "More suited to football than baseball, admitted Gladu.
"Ah," said her husband, a former local high school and college star and now head baseball coach at MCLA, "we've played in much worse. This is nothing."