Little League Champs of 1953 Back Together Again - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

5/2/08 - Longview

Little League Champs of 1953 Back Together Again

The Longview Little League All-Stars of 1953 held their first reunion in nearly twenty years this weekend.

"We're all still close," second baseman Roy Simmons said. "Not a lot of handshakes today, but a lot of hugs."

They were the under twelves then when they made the state championship game. Now, they're the under sixty-sevens, reunited for the first since 1991 and telling old stories.

"They get embellished a little bit each time we get together," Simmons admits, "what was a small story thirty years ago might be alittle bigger story today, but that's all just a part of it."

"You think back," pitcher Bill Coley said, "what you can remember you just wonder, ‘goodness, fifty-five years later.' It's just unreal. We would have never thought about being sixty-seven years old.

"We just grew up playing ball, and always been close," Simmons adds. "I guess that trip more or less bonded us forever."

The All-Stars are lifelong friends and teammates. And fifty-five years later, they can even laugh at what undid their hopes for a state championship.

"We weren't ready to play," Simmons said, laughing. "We had stayed up all night the night before throwing water balloons."

Now they're dads, grandpas, and businessmen, but they will always be the Longview Little League Champions.

Reid Kerr can be reached at

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