A special visitor…
Former longtime Dodger executive Dick Walsh visited Dodger Stadium on Friday with his son and grandson. The former Los Angeles High baseball standout joined the Dodgers’ Double-A Ft. Worth Cats of the Texas League in 1948 after his military service. Walsh worked his way up the ladder and returned to Los Angeles in 1957 when the Dodgers purchased the L.A. Angels of the Pacific Coast League. As assistant general manager, Walsh served as Walter O’Malley’s representative during the construction of Dodger Stadium. Walsh became the first director of stadium operations in 1962.
During Friday’s visit, Walsh spent time with Dodger owner Frank McCourt and ran into some familiar faces, including broadcasters Vin Scully, Jaime Jarrin, and longtime Dodger employee Bill DeLury.
Near the entrance to the Top of the Park Gift Store, there is a plaque from the stadium dedication ceremonies on April 12, 1962, two days after the home opener against Cincinnati. The plaque includes the names of O’Malley, architect Emil Praeger, chief field engineer Ira Hoyt, Vinnell Constructors and “Dick Walsh, V. Pres. Stadium Coordinator.”
Walsh, 84, was asked to pose next to the plaque and he eventually pointed to his name at the bottom of the plaque, which caught the attention of a Dodger fan about to walk into the store.
“Is that you?” he asked, prompting a modest nod from Walsh. The fan shook Walsh’s hand and said, “I just want to thank you for building such a beautiful stadium.”
– Mark Langill