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Little League International Mourns the Passing of Grayce Stotz

WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. (Aug. 25, 2006) -- Little League International today mourned the passing of Grayce Stotz, who was the wife of the late founder of Little League, Carl E. Stotz, and was the last surviving member of the first Little League board of directors.

Mrs. Stotz and her family attended the dedication of a statue depicting Carl Stotz and a Little Leaguer at the debut of Little League Volunteer Stadium during the 2001 Little League Baseball World Series.

"We were saddened to learn of the passing of Mrs. Stotz, who was the first woman volunteer in Little League," Stephen D. Keener, president and chief executive officer of Little League Baseball and Softball, said. "But we were pleased that she was able to be with us when Carl was appropriately honored as the founder of our program. Our thoughts and prayers go to Carl's daughters, Karen and Monya, and the entire Stotz family, at this difficult time."

Mr. Stotz began the Little League program in 1939, managing the Lycoming Dairy team while enlisting brothers George and Bert Bebble as the managers of the other two teams, Jumbo Pretzel and Lundy Lumber. The following season, Mr. and Mrs. Stotz formed the first local Little League board of directors with the two managers, plus George Bebble's wife Annabelle, and Bert Bebble's wife Eloise, along with John Lindemuth and his wife Peggy.

A history of the Little League program can be found here: http://www.littleleague.org/about/history.asp