Wednesday, December 02, 2009
Thanks For The Memories
James T. Doyle was an Original Section 320 Faithful at RFK Stadium, well before Our Washington Nationals transferred from Montreal, Quebec--Canada in 2005 to The Nation's Capital. You see, from 1968 through 1971, Jim Doyle was a Full Season Ticket Holder for The Washington Senators. In Section 320 at originally called D.C. Stadium, Mr. Doyle had tickets in Row 2, Seats 16 & 17. Along side him sat his young son, Andy, many times.
A Father and A Son sharing their love of the great game of baseball--together. That time honored tradition that has been passed on, generation after generation, among untold numbers of American Families throughout these United States.
Baseball truly is life like no other sport in this country and The Doyles shared many enjoyable moments together at the Old Ballyard on East Capitol Street until September 30th, 1971. The night their favorite team, The Washington Senators--Died.
The heartbreaking end for Major League Baseball in Washington, D.C. for nearly 34 years.
Despite hometown baseball no longer in their lives, Jim's & Andy's lives went on. Mr. Doyle continued his decorated career as an official in The U.S. Foreign Service and made overseas residences in Paris, France; Bonn & Berlin Germany; as well as, Dakar, Senegal. The neighboring country to The African Queen's The Gambia.
Following in his father's well grounded lead, Andy is today a successful businessman right here in Washington.
And like most all fathers and sons, The Doyles still shared moments together at ballparks after the Senators left town. Sometimes back at RFK watching The Washington Redskins. Or, maybe over at The Capital Centre in Landover, Maryland; then eventually back downtown at originally MCI Center (now Verizon Center) taking in a Washington Bullets/Wizards Basketball Game or Washington Capitals Hockey Game.
But their outings were never quite like their times shared on East Capitol Street those last four seasons of The Washington Senators.
By the time Our Washington Nationals arrived in D.C., Jim Doyle was already retired. He and his wife, Betty, had moved from Annapolis, Maryland to Cape Coral, Florida. But a longing for home found Jim & Betty now back in Northern Virginia. A perfect setup for a Son to thank his Dad for all the love and attention Jim had given Andy growing up in late 1960's and early 1970's.
Now the working man with a family of his own, Andy surprised his Dad with Full Season Tickets to The Inaugural Season of Our Washington Nationals in 2005. To make the moment even more special, Andy honored Jim by purchasing the exact same seats his Dad owned for The Senators from 1968 to 1971.
Section 320, Row 2, Seats 16 & 17.
That's right, this was a match made in heaven.
For all three seasons Our Washington Nationals played at RFK Stadium, Jim Doyle attended countless ballgames along with his son--Andy. Many times, Jim also attended with his wife, Betty. Other days, even with his granddaughter--Erin. But at all times, James T. Doyle became a Big Part of all the fun and laughter everyone enjoyed in Old Section 320. Mr. Doyle loved the constant cheering, the camaraderie and the friendships that flourished there. It's where The African Queen and I first meet him. It's also where MickNats & Mary, The Noise Boys, Abby with her parents--Becky & Mike in tow, and of course, SenatorNat--combined with many others to help form one of best rooting sections any team could ever enjoy.
There was nothing quite like Section 320 at RFK Stadium for games involving Our Washington Nationals. And there was nothing quite like experiencing Jim & Andy Doyle sitting together again at The Old Ballyard on East Capitol Street taking in a Major League Game--in the very same two seats they first shared their love of Washington Baseball in 1968. Missing a true home side for nearly 34 years on the local diamond didn't spoil their memories.
Thankfully, Nationals Baseball only enhanced it. Andy Doyle still retains Season Tickets today at Nationals Park.
Yes, Baseball Is Life and their heartwarming story needs to be told again.
Because sadly, James T. Doyle passed away last week after a long illness. He was 81 years old.
While Old Section 320 lost a great friend and ardent Senators/Nationals Fan--Andy Doyle lost his father--and his best friend.
Our hearts go out to Jim's surviving wife, Betty, and to Andy's large and extended family.
Rest In Peace--Jim.
And Thanks For The Memories.
PS--James T Doyle will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery. Memorial contributions can be made to: Capital Hospice, Attn: Development Office, 6565 Arlington Blvd., Suite 500, Falls Church, VA 22042