Frank “Squeeks” Vodicka

Playing for the Bill Rands in the Windy City League at the ripe old age of fifteen, Frank Vodicka began his softball career as the youngest player on that team and possibly in the entire league. Vodicka’s entry into 16-inch softball seemed preordained when he was born directly across from Cornell Square at 50th and Wolcott. A short -center with the reputation for being a solid defender who could also hit to all fields, Vodicka played George Young 16 inch yellow ball during the 30s and 40s. In 1937 he was honored by being interviewed by Frank Reynolds and Bob Elston on WBBM radio. Besides the Bill Rands, Vodicka played for such legendary teams as Midland Motors, Dust Motors, Stoney Tires and the John T Dempsey’s and was managed by such great managers as Lewa Yacilla, Bill “Happy” Parillo, Bill Newbaur, Ray McDonald, and Chester Matykiewicz (Whitey Maytag). Frank’s championships include two in1941: the Greater Chicago Hotel Tournament with the Hotel Shermans, and the Grant Park Industrial Tournament with Joslyn Manufacturing; Mayor Kennely’s Civic Award in 1944, the Fewer Boilers Herald American Tournament in 1945, and the Trinor Grant Giants, the Robeys, and Silhouette Lounge. Born in 1922, Frank Vodicka lives in Oak Lawn, Illinois.