Jordan, William “Buck” (2003)
In 1971 Raymond “Lanky” Jordan became an early member of The Maine Baseball Hall of Fame. Tonight we welcome his son William “Buck”,a posthumous selection to the Hall. “Buck” graduated from Fryeburg Academy in 1935 where he had been a football and baseball star. His coach was Cliff Gray Hall of Fame ‘76),.
It was on to the University of New Hampshire where he had a varsity baseball job for 3 years. He had an 8-5 record. He was widely acclaimed as an outstanding pitcher who had a tantalizing knuckleball.
He was signed by the Philadelphia Athletics and placed in the Northern League by Connie Mack. Like many a young man of the time, from 1942-1944, “Buck” served in the U.S. Army during the Second World War.
After the war he moved to Sanford, Maine, working for Coca-Cola and passed time as the pitching coach for Cheverus High School. He was a member of a unique staff headed by Bill Kiley (Hall of Fame 81). Way ahead of its time the Cheverians had “Packy” McFarland (Hall of Fame ‘93) as an assistant coach, Ceddy Simpson and Johnny McCarthy (Hall of Fame ‘81).
From 1944 to 1946 “Buck” was a player-coach for the Portland Gulls, Magnate Haley’s (Hall of Fame ‘69) New England League nine. From 1957 to 1959 Bill coached the Fryeburg American Legion baseball team.
After several years in southern Maine, he moved back to Fryeburg to work for the Postal Service. He became postmaster in 1954 and remained in that post until his untimely death in 1960 at the age of 44.
“Bill cared. He cared about Maine and he cared about baseball, he cared about his job and country, his family, his town, his friends and the people he worked with.’ -Scott A. Kelly
Theta Chi Tribute
Published: September 19, 2013
Italicized portions of this article were reprinted with permission from The Bridgton News.
Seven new members were inducted into the 2013 Hall of Excellence at Fryeburg Academy during a ceremony held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 14, 2013 at Leura Hill Eastman Performing Arts Center. The Hall of Excellence was started in 2010, and honors athletics and athletic contributions to Fryeburg Academy. The six alumni and one contributor inducted were: Paul McGuire (Significant Supporter), Joanna Kinsman ’03, Amanda Keaten Wine ’89, Cheryl Turner Schneider ’84, Louise Perry ’65, Peter Hastings ’53 and William “Buck” Jordan ’35.
William “Buck” Jordan graduated from Fryeburg Academy in 1935. While he was an outstanding varsity player in both football and baseball at FA, he was best known for his talents on the baseball diamond. An outstanding pitcher, his athletic talent helped to earn him a spot at the University of New Hampshire, where he graduated in 1939. He pitched for UNH for three years and received the New England Conference Award during his senior year, winning all but one of his games. His best (and most feared) pitch was his knuckleball.
Buck completed a successful season with the Newport Frontiers of Vermont, a semi-professional club, prior to playing for the Philadelphia Athletics as a knuckleball pitcher in the Northern League. In 1942, he was called to serve in the U.S. Army during WWII in the European Theater. Following his military career in 1944, Buck worked for Coke-A-Cola and then as a pitching coach at Cheverus High School, as well as a player-coach for the Portland Gulls.
Buck returned to Fryeburg and coached the Fryeburg American Legion Team from 1957-59. He was the Fryeburg postmaster from 1957 until his untimely death in 1960 at the age of 44 following a long illness.
Buck was a member of the Theta Chi Fraternity at University of New Hampshire (Zeta Chapter), the Frank W. Shaw Post #137 American Legion in Fryeburg and in 2003 he was inducted posthumously into the Maine Baseball Hall of Fame. He was a well-loved member of the Fryeburg community who loved his town, his friends and his country.