A great dad, teammate and pitcher was lost Tuesday.
The baseball community is mourning the loss of 16-year veteran Roy Halladay, who died in a plane crash Tuesday in the Gulf of Mexico at the age of 40 (see story).
Phillies managing partner John Middleton and chairman David Montgomery also talked about their memories of Halladay during his four years in Philadelphia, painting a picture of a selfless, diligent man.
Montgomery on the widespread impact of Halladay's death
“This is his family’s loss first but it is the Phillies' and baseball’s loss as well. All-Star pitcher, All-Star person and All-Star father and family man we lost today.”
Halladay was the father to two children, Ryan and Braden, with his wife, Brandy (see story). He enjoyed bringing his kids to the ballpark in the later stages of his tenure with the Phillies (see story).
Montgomery on Halladay the teammate
"It didn’t take long to prove his worth [in 2010], obviously. I have been hanging around here a long time, those two years of pitching (2010-11) were almost beyond description. It reminds me of one other thing when you mention team. Following that perfect game, he agonized over how to include his teammates in the perfect game. The reality is, it was Roy’s statement that it wasn’t about me and it was about us and what we accomplish and not what one accomplishes.”
Halladay often praised his catcher, Carlos Ruiz, for calling great games, especially following Halladay's perfect game against the Marlins on May 29, 2010, and his no-hitter in Game 1 of the NLDS on Oct. 6, 2010 against the Reds.
Middleton on Halladay the teammate
"What people remember about Roy is what a great human being he was. Great husband, great father, great friend, and ultimately a great teammate. But he was a great teammate because he was a great person."
Halladay dedicated himself to charity work off the field, including hunger relief and animal rescue organizations. In September, he traveled to Alabama to save two puppies whose ears were cut off.
Many of Halladay's former teammates remembered "Doc" on social media following the news of his death (see story).
Montgomery on Halladay's humility and work ethic
“I’ll never forget Kyle Kendrick saying to me if I knew how early Roy got here. As a result of that, he set the bar not by saying this is what you have to do but this is what you should do. In many ways, maybe his humility came from the fact that he went down to the minors after early success. Oftentimes, we say in this game that you learn how to succeed by failing and coming back from that. Maybe that is why he spent so much time with Harvey Dorfman thinking about the mental aspects of the game. Physical talent is one thing, but believing in yourself and having confidence takes you to the next level.”
Dorfman, the late sports psychologist, was an invaluable resource for Halladay, who credited Dorfman's counseling with resurrecting his career.
Middleton's message to Phillies fans
“I think you should remember that Roy was, first and foremost, a great human being, and he dedicated his life to doing the best he could for his family and his friends and his profession. And just be grateful for every moment you have, because you never know when it’s going to be taken away from you.”