For every glorified story of a professional baseball superstar who served his country overseas, most notably during World War II, there exists a quiet tale of the consummate professional who dutifully performed during wartime and peacetime alike.
Indeed, a total of 18 Major League umpires served during WWII alone, with countless others pooled from the Minor League, semi-pro, collegiate and even high school ranks.
Of these, at least four Minor League umpires have made the ultimate sacrifice for their country. This Memorial Day, we remember their service both on and off the field.
Sgt. Frank Healey, US Army, 1887-1918 (31), Fort Riley, Kansas, Influenza
Affiliation: Western Association
Frank Healey's was one of just four minor league deaths during World War I and one of seven to have been caused by the Spanish flu during an epidemic traced back to the Kansas army barracks in 1918. Named to the Western Association staff, Healey was just 31 years old.