Paterson, N.J. dedicates Larry Doby Lane

The legacy of Larry Doby, the second African American player to break the color barrier in Major League Baseball, has received a fitting tribute in his hometown of Paterson, N.J. A block of Liberty Street that runs past Hinchliffe Stadium has been renamed Larry Doby Lane in honor of the late baseball legend.

On a bright morning outside the gates of the 91-year-old stadium, Larry Doby Jr. spoke about the significance of Paterson in his father’s life. He expressed his gratitude for the city and the honor bestowed upon his father, emphasizing the impact that Paterson had on shaping his father’s character and aspirations.

Doby Jr. recalled his father’s fond memories of playing at Hinchliffe Stadium during his high school years. He noted that his father often spoke of the annual Thanksgiving Day football game and the friendships he formed during his time at Eastside High, where he excelled in both baseball and football. Doby’s experiences at Hinchliffe Stadium left a lasting impression on him and were central to his formative years.

The significance of Larry Doby Lane was further emphasized as Doby Jr. unveiled the street sign designating the newly named road. The design featured an American flag to represent Doby’s service in the Navy during World War II, as well as the logo of the Eastside Ghosts, his high school team. The unveiling marked the culmination of what Doby described as “a whirlwind” two days, filled with events honoring his father’s legacy.

Reflecting on the recent tributes and honors, Doby Jr. expressed pride and humility, noting the surreal nature of the experience. He emphasized the significance of the recognition, highlighting the impact that his father had off the field and the role he played in advancing equality in the United States.

The renaming of Larry Doby Lane stands as a testament to the enduring impact of Larry Doby’s life and achievements, both on and off the baseball field. It serves as a reminder of the profound influence that individuals can have in shaping the course of history and fostering positive change. The dedication of the street in his honor reflects the deep-rooted respect and admiration for Doby’s contributions to his community and the broader social fabric of the nation.

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