No matter how long I am involved here, the linkages and experiences occurring in a community like ours continue to amaze me.
Not long ago, we discovered that Brooklyn/Los Angeles Dodgers All-Star infielder, Charlie Neal was Brenda Powers' father!
Brenda serves as the Community Liaison at the J. W. Ray Learning Center, the Dallas public elementary school located just across the street from the Roseland Homes housing development where we've been working since 1996.
For over a decade we've enjoyed a close working relationship with the school, thanks largely to Brenda's efforts.
Charlie Neal won the National League's Gold Glove Award for his play with the Dodgers as their second baseman in 1959, the team's second season on the west coast. The Dodgers defeated the Chicago White Sox in the World Series that year. Neal hit two home runs in Game Two!
Neal played with Jackie Robinson.
A few weeks ago, Brenda brought her father's trophy by the office for us to see.
What a thrill!
Keith Ackerman, our resident baseball aficionado took a look at the unique award and offered to "spiff" it up a bit. Brenda readily agreed and Keith set off to restore the 50-year-old treasure to its pristine condition.
He had the ball re-glazed. He repaired the leather stringing system on the glove. He restored the finish on the trophy's base.
When Brenda came to pick up the fully restored trophy, she was overcome with joy and memory about her father, one of the most influential people in her life.
The entire experience was beyond great!
Hey, I touched Charlie Neal's Gold Glove!