Your humble typist was blessed to have David Carpenter as a partner for several years, primarily in the 1990s in Independent Baseball franchises in Thunder Bay, Ontario and in a greater way in Waterbury, Connecticut. The Waterbury team was known as the Spirit, then of the Northeast League and later the Eastern Division of the Northern League. It might as well have been named the Spirit for David, because he certainly had it.
Mr. Carpenter, who was an all-too-young 69, was laid to rest on a tranquil hillside near his Woodhull, NY farm Monday.
Every community with an Independent Baseball team--or desiring one--should have a David Carpenter. Unfortunately, not nearly enough exist.
He was a man of immense, self-made wealth, which is very important to pay the bills, especially if things do not go well in a baseball startup. The wealth came from his brilliance in the field of zinc oxide applications, where he helped build a Fortune 500 manufacturing company and where he was known as Dr. Carpenter.
But what made David Carpenter special was his nature. He was an uncommon man with a commoner's touch. The glass was always brim full, at worst. It was never half empty. He saw the positives in everything and in every person, as was pointed out so poignantly by those who spoke during the touching funeral service. He treated everyone exactly the same, with an attentive ear to hear his or her story. He did not step forward to tell his story. It was yours that was important.
David Carpenter was so modest he was not a high profile person during his years in Independent Baseball, where he could have offered so much more if only he had been asked. He would have impacted still more lives.
Tuesday, June 26, 2007
EVERY COMMUNITY NEEDS A DAVID CARPENTER
Former chief spokesman for Major League Baseball Commissioners Bowie Kuhn and Peter Ueberroth. Six years as publicity director for the Kansas City Royals, and a background in newspaper, radio and television. Started Wirz & Associates, a sports PR and consulting firm, in 1985. Has written extensively on Independent Baseball since 2003.