Harris, Bill (2004)
William “Bill” Harris 2004 marks the Golden Anniversary of Bill Harris’ introduction to the wonderful world of youth baseball.
In 1954. Bill became the official scorer for the South Portland National League - a post he held for about eight years. At the same time, he became Reggie Hall's assistant coach of the Jets and Reggie has ever since been | recognized as one of the foremost teachers of baseball for youngsters. Bill was a stellar pupil who spent over 40 years in every aspect of Little League including senior Girls softball. He touched every base: scoring, coaching the youngsters, umpiring and administrating.
In the ‘60’s he served as a manager with Harry Savage as coach for several years. He moved to Senior League with Savage, again for several years. Bill has said “the highlight of my career was the Little League city baseball championship in the mid ‘60’s”.
In 1983 he was the recipient of the Kenneth Sills Award as Little League’s Manager of the Year. He umpired at all levels of baseball and softball and was nominated for the Ellsworth Millett Award as Umpire for the State of Maine. His administrative talents were employed by serving on many Boards of Directors.
John Gleason, often times a coaching rival, has said of Bill, “He has been an example to the youth in his knowledge of the game and handling his team. He was a gentle, tough competitor, always fair in his rulings.” Bill himself says,“I have always thought these games have provided positive experiences for these children, | as well as myself. I have always tried to make these games a fun experience for the children. I once coached the son (Greg Strout) and his father (Ronnie) 21 years apart.
To this day, I have had many visits and positive conversations with many former players and their parents.
As I grow older in years, I look back and reflect on these wonderful years. How happy I am that I was able to do it!”
Bill lives in South Portland with his wife, Darla, and has two sons, a stepson and two stepdaughters.
From Legacy Pages for his obituary, Bill died Monday, Aug. 11, 2008,
Bill was a member of Little League for over 35 years and was inducted in the Maine Baseball Hall of Fame in 2004. He was also a member of the Rotary Club in South Portland. His hobbies included all sports. He managed four sports in High School, baseball, football, track and basketball.