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Sept. 1, 2012
WETHERFIELD, CONN. Ė John Sanzo, 83, who pitched for Senior Softball-USA international teams in Japan, Italy and Cuba was killed July 28 in a car accident here in his hometown.
ď I had the good fortune to play with John in all of the international tournaments and found his unfailing smile, good humor and sportsmanship extremely uplifting,Ē said Terry Hennessy, chief executive officer of SSUSA.
Sanzo provided an inspiration to softball players in other countries, proving that men and women could enjoy and effectively compete in softball in their 80s.
ďSenior Softball was such a huge part of my fatherís life and brought such enjoyment to him,Ē said Johnny Sanzo.
Gene Joseph Antonides
Gene Joseph Antonides, who played for the California Gold Rush Menís 75 team, died May 13 after a battle with cancer. In prior seasons, he had played with the San Francisco Seals and the Foothill Acorns.
He was born in Florida and later earned a degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Michigan. He moved to California to work for Lockheed Martin. He later moved to Roseville where he volunteered with the Sun City Roseville Foundation and played tournament softball.
He is survived by his wife of 51 years, Sally; and three children and five grandchildren.
Donald L. Cooper
Donald L. Cooper, who played for TNT Menís AAA team as well as Tiodize D-99 Menís 80 Major and Top Gun Jets Menís 80 this year, has died in a car accident on June 14.
The resident of Las Vegas had played for a number of teams over his long career in senior softball including Vestin Menís 70, Las Vegas 65, Del Webb Sidewinders and Practice Squad 60.
He was born May 7, 1934.
Robert H. Jackson
Robert H. Jackson, who played senior softball in the Sacramento area for more than 25 years, died at home on May 20. Softball was his passion and his missed it dearly during his battle with cancer.
He was born Nov. 24 1932 in Colorado and was an Air Force veteran.
He is survived by his wife Emma together for 56 years of marriage as well as a daughter and son and four grandchildren.
Pat Kehoe, a well-known sponsor for softball, died on July 28 at age 74. He was born in Indiana in 1937.
While working as a sales representative, he was pitching a contract to a client when the potential purchaser mentioned he had a softball he was trying to raise money for to enter some tournaments.
Pat Kehoe agreedto fund the tournaments in exchange for close the deal and from then on he was hooked on softball.
He founded Pace Electronics and he and his wife Karen immediately became involved in sponsoring menís womenís and youth softball teams in the Rochester, N.Y., area.
Over the years, the Pace teams have won more than 20 World Championships.