ALTOONA, BLAIR COUNTY--- Garfield Park in Altoona was dedicated on Sunday to a local umpire who spent more than 50 years behind home plate.
Richard “Dick” Bickel passed away in April 2009. He was known to the baseball community as “The Hammer.”
“He was always here and he did a great job for us. He really became a member of our family in our softball league, so we want to thank his family for letting us share him,” said Mike Humphreis a former player.
The players honored Bickel by putting a sign behind home plate with his famous line “2-2-2.”
“It was kind of his signature call. If there were two balls, two strikes, and two outs in an inning he would call that out with a stern firm call. That’s one thing people remember about him,” said Humphreis.
Bickel’s wife Eileen threw the first pitch of the season in honor of her late husband.