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Legion finale a painful memory

The most memorable Legion game was the last one I played in, in 1950.

Playing for the Edward Leehan Post #165 in Rockford, we had a game against Valleyford. Normally a long-ball hitter, the infield was playing deep, so I bunted for an easy hit. Taking a big lead off first, the next batter hit a line drive to right field. As I slid into third base the relay was overthrown and the coach yelled “go home Phil!”

Well, the third baseman recovered the ball and as I was nearing hom the throw came in so I decided to dive in head first to try and make the catcher drop the ball (he didn’t).

I hit the catcher’s left knee with my right shoulder. Ouch!

I heard it pop. It tore all the ligaments loose so there was nothing to hold the bones together. After the game, Dr. Hart took me up to Deaconess Hospital. The next morning the orthopedic specialist operated on my shoulder and literally nailed the bones in place.


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