The golf course and not the pitching mound was the site for a recent meeting of three figures from Oswego State baseball history. From left, Ted Grinnell ’60, Coach Emeritus Walter Nitardy and Fred Parrow ’60 reunited at Battle Island Golf Course in July, some 50 years after Ted and Fred played for Coach Nitardy at Oswego State in the late 1950s.
“Coach Nitardy racked up 503 career wins at Oswego State and he was our mentor, leader and role model,” Ted said.
“Ted was an outstanding right-handed pitcher and I was one of those notoriously wild and wacky lefthanders,” said Fred. “We had a talented team in the late ’50s.
“Coach Nitardy always placed an emphasis on playing to win, playing fair and maintaining a focus on our studies,” Fred reflected. Nitardy was a strong influence on the two men, who went on to take his winning advice and create successful careers.
The work ethic he practiced under Coach Nitardy stood Fred in good stead at Shell Oil as he beat out Ivy Leaguers on his way up the career ladder to a top position in the oil company. His 36 years at Shell, which began with a letter he wrote as an Oswego senior, would take him from Albany to Worcester, Mass., and from Seattle to Houston.
“Coach Nitardy was one great person. We all looked up to him and he always was there to help,” said Ted, who went on to a 33-year career in teaching technology education. During six years in the Sodus district, the Oswego Baseball Hall of Famer coached baseball, and while at Horseheads for 27 years, he spent some time coaching soccer.
The years melted away when the three finally reunited this past summer. “We came together as old friends with a common Oswego State bond that allowed us to make a new memory that will always remain fresh in our minds,” concluded Fred.
— Michele Reed