Doby, Lawrence, SN

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Last Rank
Last Primary NEC
Last Rating/NEC Group
Primary Unit
1945-1946, SD-0000, Naval Training Center San Diego (Faculty Staff)
Service Years
1943 - 1946

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

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Home State
South Carolina
South Carolina
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Carl Mottern (The White Buffalo), AW1 to remember Doby, Lawrence, SN.

If you knew or served with this Sailor and have additional information or photos to support this Page, please leave a message for the Page Administrator(s) HERE.
Contact Info
Home Town
Last Address
Montclair, New jersey

Date of Passing
Jun 18, 2003
Location of Interment
Not Specified
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 

WW II Honorable Discharge Pin

 Unofficial Badges 

US Navy Honorable Discharge

 Military Association Memberships
Famous People Who Served
  1948, Famous People Who Served [Verified] - Assoc. Page

 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

Profile Sponsors Note: 1-12-2014      

           I had met Larry very briefly in 1974 when he was a Coach for the Cleveland Indians.  It seemed Larry was not a very happy or outgoing individual. His demeanor towards me was alloof and snide and a bit arrogant.  Later that year, he was passed over in favor of Frank Robinson to manage the Indians.  He was vocally bitter in the press about that slight.  But even many of his younger photos  taken earlier in Larrys baseball career, show what seems to be a very distant, troubled, and oh so serious a man.
            In research for this profile I found two formal portraits of Larry later in life.  What struck me was that he seemed to be deliberatly posing with the middle finger of a visible hand, extended in a semi-hidden gesture of bitter defiance. Larrys biography is titled "Pride Against Predjudice'  The book details many of the humiliations and private strugles Larry endured throughout his life. I hope he found peace at some point.  Who am I to judge?

                                                                                                                                                                 AW1 Carl Mottern
                                                                                                                                                                 USNR            RET
Other Comments:
Lawrence Eugene Doby (December 13, 1923 – June 18, 2003) was an American professional baseball player in the Negro leagues and Major League Baseball (MLB). A native of Camden, South Carolina and three-sport all-state athlete while in high school in Paterson, New Jersey, Doby accepted a basketball scholarship from Long Island University. At 17 years of age, he became the Newark Eagles' second basemen. Doby joined the United States Navy during World War II. His military service complete, Doby returned to baseball in 1946, and along with teammate Monte Irvin, helped the Eagles win the Negro League World Series.

In 1947 at the age of 23, Doby joined Jackie Robinson in breaking the MLB color barrier as he became the first black player to integrate the American League (AL) when he signed a contract to play with Bill Veeck's Cleveland Indians. Doby was the first player to go directly to the majors from the Negro leagues. A seven-time consecutive All-Star center fielder, Doby and teammate Satchel Paige were the first African-American players to win a World Series championship when the Indians won in 1948. He was also the first black player to hit a home run in the World Series and All-Star Game. He helped the Indians win a franchise-record 111 wins and the AL pennant in 1954 and finished second in the AL Most Valuable Player (MVP) award voting as the season's RBI leader and home run champion for the second time in three seasons. In 1978 he became the second African-American manager in the majors when he joined the Chicago White Sox.

Doby later served as a director with the New Jersey Nets of the National Basketball Association (NBA) and in 1995 was appointed to a position in the AL's executive office. He was selected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1998 by the Hall's Veterans Committee and died in 2003 at the age of 79.

        Larry Doby was as much a baseball pioneer as the more famous Jackie Robinson.  Larry's contract was purchased from the Negro Leagues Newark Eagles by the Cleveland Indians. Larry Did not have a minor league break in period as Robinson did and reported strait to the Indians late in the 1947 season.  He struggled in that brief season, but was able to become a Hall of Fame caliber player when converted to the Outfield full time in 1948. 

Larry Dobys Naval Service:

Doby's career in Newark was interrupted for two years for service in the United States Navy. Doby spent 1943 and part of 1944 at Camp Robert Smalls at the Great Lakes Naval Training School near Chicago.[10]:p.68 He appeared on an all-black baseball squad and maintained a .342 batting average against squads composed of white players, some of which featured major leaguers.[11] He then went to Treasure Island Naval Base in San Francisco Bay, California. Before serving in the Pacific Theater of World War II, Doby would spend time at Navy sites in Ogden, Utah and San Diego, California. For one year he was stationed on Ulithi in the Pacific Ocean in 1945. Doby heard of Jackie Robinson's minor league contract deal with the Montreal Royals of the International League from his base on Ulithi listening to Armed Forces Radio. Doby saw real hope in being a professional baseball player instead of his aspirations to be a teacher and coach.[4]:p.31 While in Hawaii, Doby would meet fellow Navy man and future teammate Mickey Vernon.[12] Vernon, then with the Washington Senators, was so impressed with Doby's skills he wrote to Senators owner Clark Griffith, encouraging Griffith to sign Doby should the MLB ever allow integration.[13] Doby was discharged from the Navy in January 1946.[4]:p.57 Later that year in the summer, Doby and Helyn Curvy were married.[

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 Unit Assignments/ Advancement Schools
CNO - OPNAVCommander Navy Reserve Forces Command (COMNAVRESFORCOM)NAVSTA Treasure IslandNaval Education and Training Command (NETC) (Faculty Staff)
  1943-1944, SD-0000, CNO - OPNAV
  1944-1944, SD-0000, Naval Reserve Training Center (NRTC) Ogden, UT
  1944-1944, SD-0000, NAVSTA Treasure Island
  1945-1946, SD-0000, Naval Training Center San Diego (Faculty Staff)
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