A Game of Faith
A Game of Faith
From the Author
Some people refer to me as a legend. Truth is, I just wanted to play baseball. I tell people all the time, I would have played baseball for free. I love the game just that much. But my life story is about more than baseball, it’s about coming from the fields of Rock Hill, South Carolina with a little talent and a bundle of faith- faith in God, faith in myself - and faith in the game. If you believe in yourself and work hard, anything is possible. I am eternally grateful to God, my parents and John Williams Parker – the man who convinced my daddy to let me go play baseball.
I have always been a family man. That’s how I grew up. The stories of my life reflect good times, not so good times, and most of all praying times. Playing baseball in the Negro Leagues as a tween made me grow up fast, but my wife Ella and our three children, Sotello, Teresa and Cynthia made me into the man I am now. Ella is the wind beneath my wings, and has been since the day we met. Not a day goes by that I am not thankful and grateful for her presence in my life.
I have always tried to tell my story to whoever would listen. I travel to schools, boys and girls clubs, baseball parks, and anywhere else that will have me for an opportunity to share with young people about the way it was. This book is more about them than it is me, and I have a long list of people to thank for making this come to fruition, including Pat Grantham for steering the process and orchestrating meetings, contracts, pictures and anything else I have asked or needed her to do. I am also forever appreciative of my dear deceased friend “Rock” Anderson, who introduced me to co-author Diane Taylor in 2003. His faith in me and my story helped mend the quilt that Diane helped put together. Lastly, these words have been a labor of love for both me and Diane. For over a decade she has kept the faith and listened to my stories. To her I say, keep writing and keep believing.