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Indy's Bill Allen Dies at 66
May 1, 2014Bill Allen, 66, who has been instrumental playing, managing and developing softball in the Midwest died recently in his hometown in Indianapolis.
“Bill not only loved the game, he helped develop the sport as a director,” said Terry Hennessy, chief executive officer of Senior Softball-USA. “We will miss Bill for his contribution to the sport – and for his dry sense of humor.”
The person who best knew Bill, his wife Nancy, describes Bill best:
“I guess number one is that Bill never met stranger. He was loved by so many people, and he loved them back. He loved motorcycle riding, skiing, and softball. He was known fondly by many of his players as Coachie.
“There was a senior softball world series when he was in his 40s, and he knew that was something that he really wanted to do. So he put together a team for the 45 and over league there and dreamed about playing senior softball.
“His dream was to have a senior softball tournament in Indianapolis; he worked with Rick Seifman, and the first SSUSA Brickyard tournament started in 2000. There were 10 teams that year; it has grown to 50 and is one of the best SSUSA tournaments in the Midwest.
“He played and coached for INDY FOG earning two world championships, but his favorite tournament was in Las Vegas in 2001. The team took 3rd, but we were trapped in Indiana, and other players were trapped in Las Vegas because of 9/11.
"SSUSA gave us a chance to play or not, and they rearranged schedules for any team that had to fly. He and the team decided that the terrorists were not going to take away our right to play softball. So even though there were no flights available when we were scheduled to leave, we took the first flight out of Indianapolis and were one of the first planes landing in Las Vegas.
“At the gate waiting for the plane were our friends the Country Bins, and there were so many hugs and tears of joy. The team was Flying Old Glory that tournament. Butch Drake started playing senior softball that year with the team as our shortstop. ’