Central Icepak leaving major midget league
Community produced many of Newfoundland’s biggest softball names
There will be one less team in the provincial major midget league this season.
There are only about 250 people living in the community today. Even it its heyday in the 1960s, the population was just around 750.
But little places can be the sources of big accomplishments, and of the people making those accomplishments.
So it’s been with the Placentia Bay hamlet of Fox Harbour, particularly in the sport of fastpitch softball.
“People have always associated Outer Cove with rowing and St. Lawrence with soccer and they had that feeling about Fox Harbour when it came to softball,” said Kevin Foley. “From my perspective, I always felt that feeling should be recognized.”
Foley, a Fox Harbour native, is a retired educator and former president of the Newfoundland and Labrador Teachers Association. He has made things happen, and when it came to shining light on Fox Harbour’s softball history, he was determined that this should happen, too,
“To be honest, it was something that was on my mind for
several years”, he said, “but it was a matter of figuring out the best way to do it, and eventually I hit upon a wall of fame.”
And from that idea has come something tangible: the Fox Harbour Softball Wall of Fame , located inside the community centre.
The honorees are 14 people from Fox Harbour who have already been elected to the St.
John’s and/or Newfoundland and Labrador Softball Halls of Fame. In the case of the late Mag Davis, who is one of the 14, she is a member of not only the St. John’s and provincial softball halls, but also of the Softball Canada Hall of Fame.
The others enshrined on the Fox Harbour wall are Mag Davis’s four brothers — Bill, Dick, Jim and Mike — Derm
Flynn, Mike Kelly, Pat Kelly, Dan Foley, Jim Pittman, Wish Pittman
Becky Pendergast, Rose Foley and the late Tom Spurvey.
Kevin Foley, who now lives in Flatrock, but still maintains his family home in Fox Harbour, credits the Fox Harbour town council, and the local senior citizen and community centre committees for help making the wall a reality. However, he said it wouldn’t have possible without the assistance of Fox Harbour Tom Whiffen, “who contributed greatly to the establishment of this wall, especially its design and construction.”
There are some empty spaces on the wall.
Foley has an idea who might fill the empty slots, including the King brothers, Donny and Paul, who found success both as players and coaches, as well, as Frank Kelly.
“Frank Kelly drove in the winning run in (Newfoundland’s) first national championship. He won two national championships and was crucial to those teams, but he moved to Labrador City at a young age to work. He was so good, that the league there immediately put in a by-law saying he wasn’t allowed to pitch.
“Based on his early contributions, I believe there is room for him (in the provincial softball).
“And Donny King and Paul King have stood the test of time.”
The Fox Harbour Softball Wall of Fame was unveiled earlier this summer at the Fox Harbour Community Centre. On hand were 12 of the 14 honorees, including (left to right), front row: Jim Davis, Derm Flynn, Jim Pittman, Becky (Murray) Pendergast, Pat Kelly, Rose (Foley) Kelly, and Wish Pittman; back row: Mike Davis, Dick Davis, Dan Foley, Mike Kelly and Bill Davis. The late Mag Davis and Tom Spurvey are the others whose names are all the wall.