Northwest Seniors Hall of Fame Board
Rainer Martens writes: "Mike is an outstanding softball player. He's a player-coach, two roles that are difficult to do well at the same time. He is a lifelong student of the game and has the emotional control to make smart decisions in the midst of a heated contest. He is always respectful of fellow players, umpires and tournament officials, and most of all he's respectful of the game because he loves the sport so much.
Mike's most cherished accomplishments are helping players become aware of cancers and providing support and counseling. He has been a personal inspiration playing the game shortly after a triple by-pass, spine and knee surgery, prostate and thyroid cancer. Mike was chosen as the
Comeback Player of the Year my Masters Athlete Magazine."
Payseno, 79, a former South Kitsap running back, baseball and basketball player and was also a University of Washington standout halfback for Darrell Royan an Jim Owens in the mid-fifties. Dick lives in two different places — three if you count the house sitting he is now doing on Stretch Island in Mason County for LakeLand Village Golf Course owner Don Anderson. Otherwise, he lives in a senior citizen residence in Costa Mesa, Calif., and in a home he and a son built in Monroe, WA.
The California residency gives him the opportunity to continue his slowpitch softball passion by practicing and playing with various teams in the Orange County area. Payseno, a center fielder, has become one of the best senior players on the West Coast, playing for a team in Seattle that won several national championships and later for a team in California that did likewise.
Payseno was inducted into the National Senior Softball Hall of Fame in 2006.
Art Eversole wrote: Coach Payseno was the head coach @ Cleveland High School coaching both Tad And Art Eversole in 1964 taking his team to the city championships played @ Sicks stadium. .
"Bill Ruth wrote: "Bob is an unselfish player, a team player, a quiet warrior, but one with tremendous competitive spirit. He truely represents the essence of what Senior Softball is all about. He emulates good citizenship, team camaraderie, and a helpful hand in all of his softball activities."
Tom Bursca wrote: "Bob is without question, one of the finest Senior softball pitchers that I have played with and against. He is a true student of the game. Also a great hitter, he has consistently been one of if not the top hitter on the team."
"SACRAMENTO – Jim Sherman, 71, has been chosen as the first player to be inducted into the Senior Softball-USA Hall of Fame. Sherman, who won three Triple Grand Slams in a row and 40 major championships, is known as an outstanding hitter.
Sherman joins Bob Mitchell, founder of Senior Softball-USA, as the first SSUSA Hall of Famers. “These first two SSUSA Hall of Fame inductees set an exceptionally high standard,” said Terry Hennessy, SSUSA chief executive officer. “They epitomize the best parts of our sport".
Sherman, a native of Seattle, was the chief safety officer for the Seattle Fire Department for 30 years. He was in charge of training firemen in first aid, CPR and the use of defibrillators until he retired.
After retiring, he continued offering classes and CPR training to several groups throughout the Seattle area and four years ago proposed establishing training and providing defibrillators at SSUSA tournaments.
For the past three years, Sherman has trained scores of SSUSA officials, umpires, players and managers at no charge. That training – and the defibrillators – has resulted in the saving of four lives during SSUSA tournaments since the program began.
On the field, Sherman has been a key force in his teams winning more than 40 major championships. The cap of his career, however, was winning three Triple Grand Slams in a row.
“The Triple Grand Slam crowns meant the most,” said Sherman. “We won in Mobile in 2005 with the Emerald City Masters, then in 2006 with the WE Ruth Realty 60s and in 2007 with Joeseppi’s.”
Sherman said of his selection: “It’s the dream of everybody’s life to be inducted into the Hall of Fame. It is quite an honor to win it.”
Jack Robinson writes, "Bob is one of the most admired and respected players I have met in senior softball, and his winning attitude gives inspiration to everyone around him."
Terry Hennessy wrote, "Bob has played at the highest level of the sport for more than a decade, and has been the driving force - both on and off the field - behind several national championship teams, including Tharaldson's, the Las Vegas Elks, Arizona Heat, and Start Street Pizza. Bob is one of the smartest players in our sport."
Russ Curtis says, “Bob is the ultimate team player, who can play any position, and will bat anywhere in the lineup without complaint. He is a .700-.750 hitter that runs for other players.”
Dave Barnes writes, “Bob is an exceptional outfielder with good foot speed and is a .700 hitter with power.
Jim "Crusher" Douglas
Pete Conley wrote: "Can't help but be impress by
the level of his consistent performance and the high
level of his desire to Win. Jim continually makes
the most amazing plays I've ever seen."
Charlie Partin wrote: "Besides being on of the best
long ball hitters in senior softball, Jim is truly a
gentleman and sportsman in every way."
Ronal Power wrote: "Jim is not only a great family
man and loving husband, but a great softball player.
His knowledge of the game is great. He's like a field
general, he will always call out the play."
"Bill has been a major contributor, not only as a fine defensive and offensive ball player all these years, but as a major ambassador of softball belief. He is a gentleman who is known by a huge majority of softball players throughout the US. If you don't know Bill, he is the one with the constant smile, who is forever promoting other teammates, players from other teams, and teams from the softball world." - Bob Lycan
Al Brotherton wrote, "Bill was almost always one of the top few players in batting average. In addition he is a tremendous infielder. He seldom makes and error and consistently makes difficult fielding plays look easy. He is a 'total' ballplayer and 'the real deal' when it comes to Senior Softball. He absolutely loves to play the game." "He is one of the finest teammates a player could have. He is courteous, respectful, considerate, humble, and downright awesome to 'hang out' with."
Joe Stortini wrote, "Norm is the kind of team member that adds fun, leadership, and a positive attitude. He has been the leading hitter for as long as I can remember. Norm Huletz is a great all-around person."
Dale Rickford wrote, "Norm played with intense abandoned and was a leader in every way for the team. His favorite hit was a line drive to right center, but if you tried to move in on him, he would pull the ball or hit it over your head."
Bill Winter wrote, "Norm is the kind of guy who knows the game and is always there ready to play with a kind word and a smile. Norm is a fine example of a true sportsman."
Mike Vetovich was inducted into the SSUSA Hall of Fame in 2014 as a player.
The ceremony took place in Tupelo, Mississippi early December during the ISA/SSUSA rules committee symposium.
Tupelo is best recognized as the birthplace of Elvis Presley.
Art Eversole wrote” Mike known as "Big Mike" to his teammates stands 6' 5" tall, a prodigious long ball hitter even today.
Best known for his affiliation with Bill Ruth's Ruth Realty teams for nearly two decades winning many world and national championships along with all-star awards and tournament MVP's. Mike is also a gentleman and a great teammate as well as coach.
SACRAMENTO –Jim Hornus says of Rick, “He is the total ballplayer, offense and defense, he can do it all. As a coach you couldn’t ask for a better team player. Always willing to give up playing time so others can get in the game, doesn’t care where he bats in the line up, and his insight about the game makes my job so much easier.”
Joe Franco writes, “Rick Littlejohn has played with Ruth Realty from the year 2000 to the present. He was and is a five tool player, hitting for a high average, with power, speed and a great arm. We have to go outside of the numbers to really showcase his value.
Bill Ruth wrote, "Some players just automatically set themselves a step above the average ball player. Rick has done that his entire career. Quiet and unassuming, Rick is a very very talented individual and a true leader."
To: NW Senior Softball:
Marv Rueck Selected into the National Senior Softball Hall of Fame Class of 2018!
The National Senior Softball Hall of Fame committee recognizes all the SSUSA regions, some 12 nationally. Each year the NSSHF considers hundreds of applicants in order to select a very few into their Hall of Fame. This year Marv was one of the most outstanding candidates selected, one of only a few from the west.
Marv’s senior softball playing career spans from 1993 to the present. He has played for Major and Major Plus teams throughout this period and in the process earned dozens of All Star and All American honors. His achievements are exceptional.
Marv and his wife Mary Lou currently reside in Sherwood, Oregon and is still active in senior softball travel teams.
What is equally impressive are the wonderful praises he received in all the Letters of Recommendation that were included in his nomination booklet. Not only is he an outstanding player athlete but an outstanding person as well, on and off the field. I quote from one letter: “He is most respectful of the game and everyone involved. He is the kind of person every man wishes he was and what he hopes his sons will be.”