Percy “BoBo” Coleman
Clyde Park District
Dennis S. Colucci
Anthony T. Calderone
Nick “Moose” Camillo
Dan “Sheik” Carmody
Team Chicago Daily News
Nate “Sweetwater” Clifton
Gildo "Gil" Coldebella started playing softball at Riis Park when he was a teenager. He played third base for the Lobos when they won the state title in 1955. He played with the Rogues at Clarendon and Kelly Parks and with the Big Banjo Bruins and the Lobos at Kosciusko Park. He primarily played third base but also pitched. In 1975, he was named an All American third baseman at the nationals.Gildo and his wife, Edith, live in Huntley, Illinois. They have three children – Mark, Diane, and Steven.
Team Commonwealth Edison
Team Continental Bank
Ken “Coop” Cooper
Peter “Uncle Pete” Crnjak
Thomas “Durke” Curran
Henry “Hawk” Currie
Tom “Eggs” Czarnik
Carey B. Goins
Carey Goins was born on the South Side of Chicago. Like so many young people before him, he started playing 16-inch softball in the vacant lots, alleys, and schoolyards of his neighborhood. He graduated from Calumet High School in 1971 (where he was a drummer in the band and played football) and then attended Eastern Illinois University. While at Eastern he learned that “softball” meant playing 12-inch, so he started a 16-inch tournament with his fraternity brothers.
He returned to Chicago in 1977 after graduation and created Deathwish with his frat brothers, family, and friends; he played catcher. They played at Avalon Park where they did not win a game but always played hard. The next year they competed in the Washington Park Sunday’s Best Softball League. They added veteran coach Ted Gothard and never finished below fourth place for the next four years. In 1985 they won the league championship. In 1985 they also entered the Saturday Budweiser League, won the regular season title and took second in the “AA” division playoffs. In 1985 Cary took his young team to the Blue Island “A” League where they finished third and realized that they could compete in competitive tournament softball. With this attitude, they entered the Blue Island Major League in 1988.
The team got better and the young players progressed. In 1993 they took third in the USSSA “A” State Tournament out of eighty-four teams, sixth in the USSSA “A” Nationals, and eighth in the ASA “A” Nationals. The team disbanded in 1993 as they were reaching their full potential after the death of Caery’s mother and the death of his wife a year later.
After three years out of softball, his friends convinced him to put a team back together, so Double Diamonds was formed in 1996, becoming Deathwish 2 in 1999. They combined with Rolling Dice in 2006. They won several Blue Island “A” league championships and played in two ASA Major Nationals and many “A” nationals over the years.
Carey retired after the 2006 season, but in 2010 Clifford “Pete Nice” Brown convinced him to manage the 10 Deep softball team. In 2012 he became the manager of the Dog Pound softball team.
Calvin Jackson’s 16-inch softball career started at the age of twelve (1961). He was under the tutelage of Mr. Walton in the Madden Park-Darryl Home Park District softball league, located at 3813 South Rhodes. This league had two divisions: the Intermediate (12 to 15 years) and the Senior League (15 to 17 years).
Calvin first played for the Cavaliers. They won the Madden Park-Darryl Home Park championship for three years in a row. His team soon became eligible for the Senior league where they won this championship for the next two years. At the age of seventeen, he was introduced to the Tavern League at Farmers Field located at 49th Dorchester where he played for the Jive Ten.
In 1969, Calvin was drafted into the Army where he continued to play sports. While in the army, he played 12- inch softball and basketball. In 1970, his team won the basketball championship for the Fort Riley, Kansas Army Base where he was stationed. As a member of a tank battalion, he received a medal for sharp shooting and expert shooting. He was honorably discharged in 1971.
He resumed playing softball with the Iron Man in 1971, and continued to play with them (off and on) until 1989. Calvin also played for the Trillionares (1973), the 203 Stars, and the Flamingos (1974), leading them to the playoffs each year. He helped the Senators (1975) win the softball championship and compete in the Nationals in Marshalltown, Iowa. During that year (1975) the Senators won three championships in the Chicago softball league.
Calvin was known for his fielding, his on - base percentage and his outstanding speed. He could play all positions with equal ability. From 1977 to 1980, he played for the Dating Game, Raven and Sandies in the Cocktail League. He also played for the Cook County Highway Department in the Grant Park Industrial League.
From 1982 to 2002, he played with the Bandits, helping them to numerous championships. With the Bandits, he participated in the Nationals at Marshalltown, Waterloo, and Grand Rapids, Iowa and in Racine, Wisconsin.
Throughout Calvin’s softball career, he played in many parks throughout Chicago and the surrounding suburbs, including Tuley, Coles, Princeton, Grand Crossing, Mount Prospect, Blue Island, Washington, and Argo Park. He also had the distinction in playing in the Chicago Tribune North-South Side All-star game. Calvin feels honored to have to have played with Floyd Glover (HOF), Phil Williams (HOF), Leonard McKinnon (HOF), Dan Dumas (HOF), George (Junior) Franklin, Gene Mathis, Donny Gardner (HOF), Willie (Billy Bumstead) Johnson (HOF), Hank Kemp (HOF), and Austin Ware (HOF).
Besides softball, Calvin enjoyed playing racquetball (where he competed at “A” level) and hunting.
Calvin retired from the Chicago Fire Department after thirty years (1977 to 2007) and still resides in Chicago, Illinois
For many years, the Doran brothers, Rich, Jerry and John, and Vito Povilaitis of Mt. Greenwood were the nucleus of many youth baseball teams until they began their softball careers by assembling a softball team called the Trumbullies. They played at Mt. Greenwood in 1972 and 1973. Like many young teams, they weren’t as competitive as they hoped, so they set out to recruit new players. John Doran attended Western Illinois University and it was there in September of 1973 that he met Dave “Jake” Jacobson from Park Ridge. Jake suggested they form a union of top players from the North and South Sides of Chicago. Jake recruited top talent from the North Side with Tony Reibel (HOF), Derek Singleton, Bill Spicer and Ron Ziemann (HOF) of the Amalgamonsters. In 1974, they began competing as the People’s Choice.
Both Rich Doran and Sam Taylor of the Flamingos attended Chicago State University, where they were stars on the nationally ranked wrestling team. After Rich saw Sam on the intramural softball field, he knew he had to have him on People’s Choice! It took some time, but eventually Sam joined the team in 1976 and overnight the “Choice” became a force to be reckoned with now that they had one of the best 16 - inch softball players in the City of Chicago!
Sam Taylor also had a pipeline of talent that brought Drake Jones and Stanley Brown from the Flamingos and Odell Humphries into the fold in 1977. These players added to a solid nucleus that consisted of players from other teams: Gary Ringhofer, added in 1979 from the Condors, Angelo Moca (Tahoe), Rich Ladewig and Frank Mioni (Whips), Ron Peltz and Bob Steadman (Renegades), Tom Kevin, Joe Moms and Tom O’Malley.
John Doran landed their first sponsor: the Chicagoland Plumbing Council, a sponsorship that would last from 1976 to 1981. They would make Mt. Greenwood their home park. They would also be sponsored by Tally’s Pub in Ford City Shopping Center and Klehm Nurseries of Arlington Heights.
An integrated team, with a strong desire to win, People’s Choice played all over the city and suburbs and always fared well. Though not always welcomed wherever they went, they thrived on winning and being the enemy. They dominated Mt. Greenwood Park from 1974 to 1992. They won championships in three different decades (70’s, 80’s and 90’s) to go along with numerous championships in Mt. Greenwood. They also won league championships in Arlington Heights, Bensenville, Itasca, Mt. Prospect, Roselle, Schaumburg, Wood Dale and Hamlin Park. Other team highlights include:
1.1979- Record: 83-9
2.1980- Six players named as Mt. Greenwood All-Stars
3.1982- Won all four leagues in Mt. Greenwood (first grand slam in park history)
4.1982- Twelve players nominated for the All-Chicago All-Star Team
5.Won three of four league titles in Mt. Greenwood Park three times
6.Won the Mt. Greenwood Sunday League title fourteen times in a fifteen year stretch
Softball legends and future Hall of Famers Ron Ziemann, Benny Holt, Jack Kelly, Mark Frighetto, Ken Flaws, Steve Prostran and Ken Cooper all played with People’s Choice through the years when their schedules permitted. In 1992, the People’s Choice ended their years of competition by winning the league titles at Mt. Greenwood and Hamlin Parks.