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 > Little League Online > Media > Little League News Archive > 2013 > January-April > Little League® Honors Coloradan with 49 Years of Service as Volunteer of the Year Award Recipient

Little League® Honors Coloradan with 49 Years of Service as Volunteer of the Year Award Recipient

Little League® Honors Coloradan with 49 Years of Service as Volunteer of the Year Award Recipient

CCL

In 1964, Dave Mantlo, of Grand Junction, Colo., was just trying to impress his girlfriend when he volunteered to umpire a Little League game. Now, 49 years later, Mr. Mantlo is still married to that woman, and has been a Little League volunteer ever since. Little League Baseball and Softball will recognize Mr. Mantlo with this year’s Volunteer of the Year Award at the 2013 Little League Baseball® World Series.

“I was a senior in high school, and my girlfriend took me to a Little League game,” said Mr. Mantlo. “Her father was looking for an umpire, and I played baseball, so I said I would do it. Forty-nine years later, I’m married to Linda, and I’ve been a volunteer ever since.”

In 1974, Grand Mesa Little League purchased their fields, and Mr. Mantlo has been a prominent fixture there ever since. He’s coached, served as league president, umpired and done just about everything in between, including shepherding his five children through the Little League program.

“The millions of men and women who volunteer their time so that children around the world can have great Little League experiences are the heart of this organization,” said Stephen D. Keener, Little League President and CEO. “Mr. Mantlo has been a pillar of the Little League community, and we’re honored to recognize his dedication to Little League and the Grand Mesa community with the Volunteer of the Year award.”

Mantlo

Dave Mantlo, 2013 Little League Volunteer of the Year Award recipient.

With the support of his family, fellow volunteers and the community, Mr. Mantlo has made the facilities of Grand Mesa Little League his pet project, spending about 80 hours a week at the complex from March through October. He’s overseen the construction of offices and fields, the improvement of roofs and concessions stands and countless other projects. In 1976, he told the Board of Directors that instead of paying someone to mow the fields, to buy a mower, and he would do it. He’s on his fifth lawn mower. For his time and commitment, Mr. Mantlo will be honored at the 2013 Little League Baseball® World Series as the Volunteer of the Year.

“I never thought that I would even qualify for the honor,” said Mr. Mantlo. “I’m in it for the kids, not to make a name for myself.”

Mr. Mantlo will be recognized at a ceremony during the 67th Little League Baseball World Series, which begins on Thursday, Aug. 15 in South Williamsport, Pa., with the Championship Game scheduled for 3 p.m., Sunday, Aug. 25. The Little League Awards Breakfast will be held on Thursday, Aug. 22. For more information on the Series and to follow the action live, visit llbws.org

Learn more about the Little League Awards program.