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As an Englishman, my enthusiasm for baseball may seem a tad strange. Baseball is not popular in Britain, and yet I developed a passion for the American national pastime at a tender age. And since 1999, I've been researching the impact of war on professional baseball. Why? Well, it gives me an opportunity to combine two things that fascinate me in life – World War II and the great game of baseball.

Coinciding with the release of my first book on the subject, "Baseball in World War II Europe" in 2000, I launched the now popular BaseballinWartime.com website as a way of sharing the information I was uncovering. A major part of this website was a section entitled "In Memoriam," dedicated to baseball players who lost their lives during World War II. It amazed me that no prior listing had ever been compiled relating to the National Pastime's commitment to the war in relation to deaths and I took it upon myself to rectify the situation. In 2009, McFarland publishers released my second book, "Baseball's Dead of World War II," a collection of 127 biographies of professional players who lost their lives while serving with the military during World War II. Since the release of "Baseball's Dead" the list has grown to 153 and I decided to look beyond World War II and see what players made the ultimate sacrifice in other conflicts, or even while serving in the military in peacetime.

The result of this research is BaseballsGreatestSacrifice.com, launched in January 2012, and dedicated to the 500 players who died in service. It serves as the only Internet source dedicated to these men and will eventually include biographies for every player I am able to uncover, from major league to amateur.

What do I hope will become of this information? Well, one day, I’d love to see Major League Baseball recognize the players who died in service. Maybe a plaque inscribed with their names. C’mon guys, it’s time they were honored.

Gary Bedingfield Gary Bedingfield
Founder and Editor


Just added: The first chapter of Baseball's Greatest Sacrifice Through the Years. A year-by-year record of ballplayer deaths in the military.

Is the list of players complete?
The list is in no way complete and I'm always looking for additional names. I'm currently at around 500 and counting.

How regularly will the website be updated?
As free time permits I will be adding new biographies every week.

How does the website differ from Baseball in Wartime?
Baseball's Greatest Sacrifice will focus exclusively on players who lost their lives in military service. Baseball in Wartime will continue to explore World War II baseball in general.

How can I get involved?
I'm looking for help compiling biographies on non-WWII players who lost their lives. If you'd like to write a biography for one of the players featured on the website then drop me a line and I'll let you know the format I'm using.

I'd like to sponsor a particular player biography page. Can I do this?
All biographies are open to sponsorship. A small donation will secure your sponsorship along with a personalized message on the page. Drop me a line for more information.

Can I advertise on Baseball's Greatest Sacrifice
In an effort to finance this project and the research involved to help it grow Baseball's Greatest Sacrifice is open to all advertising ideas. Drop me a line if you're interested in advertising with us.


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