Thursday, January 12, 2012

PONY Baseball Remembers Chuck Dubski

With a heavy heart and great sadness, PONY Baseball & Softball has lost one of their own. Charles Anthony “Chuck” Dubski Jr., born January 15th, 1957 passed away in his sleep on December 27th, 2011.

 Chuck had been serving as the Region Director, Southeast Region, Southern California Division (West Zone) at the time of his passing. He was instrumental in the success of the Champions Division of PONY Baseball, helping those children with special needs enjoy the game of baseball. Chuck served 3 years as the West Zone Champions Division Representative.  Chuck had many interests in life but his love of baseball was undeniable. He was an avid New York Yankees fan, he bled blue blood. Although Chuck had no children of his own, he was involved in Moreno Valley Youth Federation Baseball for 14 years, serving as the Vice President for 8 of those years.

 “Chuck was a Great Team Player and was always willing to help his fellow PONY Directors. We will all miss his smile and his friendly, outgoing personality” said Southern California Division Director, Don Goebel. West Zone Vice President, Joe Gagliardi, echoed Don’s comments.

 Funeral services for Chuck were held on 6 January, in Riverside, CA. Approximately 30 PONY Directors from Southern California attended the services, including PONY President; Abe Key, West Zone Vice President; Joseph Gagliardi, North Division Director; Abel Hernandez, South Division Director; Don Goebel and his wife Cindy, as well as numerous local directors.

 The funeral services for Chuck was standing room only at the Church of Jesus Christ of
Latter-Day Saints in Riverside. Paying special tribute to Chuck and his family, stories of friendship, family and community involvement, brought sadness, smiles and laughter to all those in attendance.

 “I think Chuck would want us all to wipe away our tears, give each other a hug and move on to what we are all here to do, “Protect Our Nation’s Youth”. It is what Chuck truly did. He was born to be a PONY Director and certainly believed in the PONY mission. He LIVED it Daily. He will be missed by so many. Seeing the numbers of people who came to pay their final respects to Chuck was great to see. As adults we are able to cope a little better with these situations, let’s watch out for the kids as Chuck would want us to do” said Keith Spencer, Southwest Region Director (San Diego, County) who attended the services with his wife Brenda.

Reflecting on time spent with Chuck, Lonnie Smith, Assistant Region Director, Central Region and current Champions Division Director for the West Zone, Lonnie offered these comments In talking with the various Champion Leagues in the West Zone, one thing stands out, Chuck was the right man to bring the Champions League out west. Chuck’s enthusiasm for growing the program lead several of our leagues to begin serving the special needs community. His legacy in the Champions League will long be remembered, and will continue to inspire me as I take the torch and move Chuck's legacy forward.”

Bill Blaylock, North Region Director stated so simply yet perfectly “I Will always remember his laughter." I think that is what we will all miss so much.

Dana Robie, Assistant Softball Director, West Zone, offered these words in remembering Chuck, “I knew Chuck Dubski for the better part of a decade, as an acquaintance initially and as a colleague and friend for the past 5 years or so.  As I listened to many people eulogize Chuck last Friday, he was described by his relatives, friends, co-workers and youth baseball colleagues using a variety of adjectives: stubborn, bull-headed, unwavering, passionate, single-focused, and opinionated.  Those in attendance obviously agreed, as evidenced by their nods, smiles, and laughter.

As one, who like Chuck, has invested thousands of volunteer hours with the administration of a large youth baseball and softball league
, I appreciate these descriptors more than most and believe that they can be combined to create one very positive characteristic, which resonates loud and clear, across the board with me ... CONSISTENT.

In his wisdom, Chuck realized that just being consistent was not enough.  He understood that although "Fair" might not be an adult concept, his target audience was not adults, but rather children; little people who depend on adults to be fair.  Chuck also possessed this trait.

To be sure, Chuck did have "favorites" in his leagues and at his tournaments ... those that followed the rules and remembered that the game was about ... and for the children.  He should be applauded for this. 

His absence will be felt, if not understood, by many.”

In closing, we must all move on but we will always have Chuck in our thoughts. His wife Rhonda, will still be with us as a PONY Director. We are all so thankful for that. I am sure we will still find her down at the ball field and doing what she too loves to do by taking care of the kids in the community.

May you Rest in Peace Chuck. You have touched us all and will be missed by so many.

Your PONY Brothers and Sisters