For me it was a magical trip back to Dyersville Field of Dreams for the inaugural Sox-Yankees game — even though my “trip” was viewing the televised game on my local Fox channel in Southern California. I grew up in Dyersville which has always been a “baseball town.” Good memories flood back, as I watched the pre-game history of the Field of Dreams movie site, seeing the beautifully constructed and groomed new field next to the original, and then watching the famous Iowa sunset shortly before the White Sox clinched it with their storybook bottom of the night homerun win. Could Shoeless Joe author W.P. Kinsella have created such a postscript for his famous novel which inspired the movie?
That all this took place in Dyersville is only fitting. I grew up in this friendly and nurturing town. I was blessed to have attended the Xavier Catholic Schools in the ‘50s. I got part-time and summer jobs at Brueckner Drug Store and the Dyersville Commercial, with the opportunity to photograph the baseball tournaments at Dyersville Commercial Club Park. My local baseball heroes at that time were Whitehawk Manager Tom Jenk, Bud Ross and Lefty Meyer. Right after graduation, I served a three-year enlistment in the Army, returning to attend the University of Iowa, working two summers for the Commercial and one for the Telegraph Herald. My personal experiences in Dyersville formed me and prepared me for the fulfilling life I’ve lived since then. Things I learned in those jobs were instrumental in my future business career. The character of the people I knew, and still know, serve as my standard to this day.
So this year, even though 50-plus years ago I moved away from Dyersville, I’m happy to say that I never really left. And yes, I still subscribe to the Dyersville Commercial.