The Melbourne Baseball Club is deeply saddened at the passing of a favourite son, Gary Arthur. Gary has spent close to 50 years at the club as a junior player, senior player, coach, volunteer and administrator. Gary had a unique understanding and passion for the club and its history. He was loved and respected both at our club and by the greater Victorian baseball community. Gary's presence will be sorely missed on the hill at Surrey Park.
Our thoughts and condolences to son Tom and partner Megan, his grandson Jack, his parents Les and Merle and brother Ross and the wider Arthur family.
Gary's funeral will be this Friday at 10:30 at Le Pines Funerals, Whitehorse Rd. Box Hill followed by a wake afterwards at Melbourne Baseball Club Surrey Park Box Hill.
Like most younger brothers, Gary followed his older brother Ross and began playing with the Club at Under 15 level in 1974. Playing at all levels with the juniors, progressing into the seniors and eventually into the firsts in 1985. In the club’s Division 2 premiership year of 1987 / 88, he tied for the MVP award, having an outstanding year in which he batted .425 with 8 home runs and 36 RBI’s from 25 games.
Throughout his career with Melbourne a “trade mark” of Gary’s game was not only the number of home runs hit, but they distance they travelled. Perhaps the most memorable being the home run against Doncaster that cleared the pavilion at Macleay Park.
Gary retired as a player in 1994, but was talked out of retirement when the club entered a Masters Team in 1999 and was a member of the premiership team in 2003.
Throughout his time as a senior player, Gary has assisted in coaching junior teams at various levels and was a member of the club’s first Junior Committee and later was a member of the Senior committee for many years. In the years as a Senior player, when not coaching juniors sides, Gary was in constant demand to umpire Junior games on a Sunday. Gary was so respected as an umpire by both Melbourne and opposition clubs that in one year he was requested by both the VBA Junior League and our opposition to be Plate Umpire in finals.
When Gary’s son Tomas was old enough to play baseball, Gary returned to a junior coaching role and has been assisting coaches in the junior areas where Tomas has been involved.
Over the last few years he has been a constant member of the crowd on the hill, providing support to not only the first nine but many other teams as well as an encouraging voice.
Les, Merle, Ross and Gary are all Life Members of the club. Gary will be sorely missed for his good humour and warm heart.