Veteran sportswriter to discuss WWII and baseball
Updated 1:59 pm, Friday, June 15, 2012
Veteran sportswriter, radio newsman and author, Jack Cavanaugh, a Wilton resident, will address the Senior Men's Club of New Canaan in Morrill Hall at St. Mark's Church on Friday, June 22 at 10 a.m. He will discuss baseball, America's national pastime and its effect on the war effort as captured in his new book, "Season of `42."
Baseball's hold on the nation's sporting masses was severely tested during the early months of World War II. With news of Axis victories in Europe, Africa and Asia dominating the headlines, and rationing becoming part of America's daily life, major league baseball -- by comparison -- seemed inconsequential. The 1942 season was the last during which most of the game's stars were still in uniform; they had yet to exchange their flannels for Army and Marine olive drab, or Navy blue and white.
"Was baseball an essential activity during the war? Of course not," Cavanaugh said. "And yet 1942 was one of the most fascinating years in American history. There's a lot about it that the younger generation doesn't know."
"Season of '42" is much more than a recap of a memorable baseball season. Cavanaugh, delves into the American war effort. He writes about the shortage of aircraft, ships and other military weaponry -- in part because of the "scandalous inefficiency and profiteering by some manufacturers..."
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Cavanaugh was born in Stamford and grew up rooting for the St. Louis Cardinals. He was an athlete during his teen years at Stamford High School, and he played freshman basketball and baseball at Syracuse University. It was his journalism career that led to his induction into the Stamford Hall of Fame.
The Senior Men's Club of New Canaan is open for new members. Applicants are especially welcome to attend this meeting. Visit www.smcnc.org for more information or call membership chairman Jerry Transue at 203-966-6050.