Gallagher, Francis (Bud) (1984)
John (Bud) Gallagher
His license plate said it all:
Ct - ASA - Ump-in-Chief. Gallagher, former three-sport star at Portland High, was head of Connecticut’s softball umpires as well as state commissioner.
Gallagher moved to Connecticut to take a job with Pratt & Whitney in 1950 after starring for the Bulldogs in Telegram League play.
A fine outfielder, Gallagher hit .439 with power for Portland’s 1931 Telegram League champions. Naturally, he made the All-Telegram league team. An excellent baseball career at Bridgton Academy and Bates College ensued, followed by a successful semi-pro stint, chiefly with the crack Burnham and Morrill nine.
His baseball experience proved valuable when he discarded his bat and glove for an umpire’s mask. Friendly but firm, Gallagher quickly moved to the top rung of national softball umpires. He worked three national softball championships, two men’s and one women’s.
Bart Fisher, sports editor for the New Britain Herald, once wrote: “Bud's word 1s law, behind the plate and on the basepaths and it has been for a long, long time. He’s done as many as six games In a single day
still does three and four games a day with regularity. He has unquestioned competence and consummate fairness.”’ Gallagher, one of Maine’s finest exports, was a member of the Pine Tree State's 1937 softball title team that played in the national tournament in Chicago. He also is a member of Connecticut’s Softball Hall of Fame.
Asked if the rigors of umpiring were worth it, Gallagher once said: ‘“The associations are priceless —and more than offset the occasional disputes that turn up on or around any diamond, softball or baseball.