50 Years Later, Newberry Little Leaguers Return to Williamsport

WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. -- Teams from all over the world are in South Williamsport to try and make history at the Little League World Series, but one former Little League team from the Newberry section of Williamsport is back in town to celebrate that history they made 50 years ago.

It's been 50 years since the Newberry Little Leaguers did what no other team from Williamsport has ever done before. Members of that team held a 50-year anniversary on Tuesday to relive that summer they spent playing ball at the World Series.

The 1969 Newberry Little League team remains the only team in Williamsport history to play in the Little League World Series. Members from that historic Newberry team met in Williamsport to celebrate and reflect on the memories they share.

"You know, we are getting to that point that's maybe our last to get everybody together, you know, to commemorate and catch up on our lives, too," said Rusty Sechler.

The reunion marked the 50th anniversary of Newberry's run to the World Series, and for some of the guys, it was the first time they got to see their teammates since that summer of 1969.

"I think, number one, anxious, because we don't know what anybody looks like anymore, but number two, I have been looking forward to it and one more time of getting together," said Don Cohick from San Antonio, Texas. "It's really nice to see some of the guys I haven't seen, and I've had interesting conversations on the phone with them, and it's like we have seen each other every day since."

"Seeing some of the guys and reliving some of the games and going through some of the scrapbooks, should be a fun time," said Steve Karney from Parker, Colorado.

Rusty Sechler, the host of the reunion, had a special surprise for all of his former teammates in attendance.

Each player from the 1969 Newberry Little League will be gifted a replica Team East jersey with their name on the back in commemoration of the 50-year anniversary.

"These jerseys are very similar to what we wore, except for the material that we wore in 1969, so we will wear those in the parade and on the field on (August) 22."

The Grand Slam Parade is Wednesday evening in Williamsport, and the members of the 1969 team will be part of it. They will also be recognized on the field at Lamade Stadium during the Little League World Series on August 22.

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