Harold E. "Hal" Sanders, 89, 607 N. Allen St., Robinson, Ill., formerly of Wausau, died Monday, May 7, 2012, at the Long Term Care Unit of Crawford Memorial Hospital, Robinson, following a period of declining health.
Hal served in the U.S. Navy from 1943 to 1945. He then began a passionate baseball career starting with the Wausau Lumberjacks. He spent two years in the minor leagues in Harrison, Pa.; Class A ball at Wilkes Barre, Pa.; and finally on their AAA team in Oklahoma City. Hal then went on to play for the Merrill Rangers for the next four years, winning state tournaments in 1951, '52 and '53. Former teammates, opponents and fans remember "Handsome Hal" as the best outfielder they had ever seen.
In January 2006, Hal was inducted into the Central Wisconsin Baseball Hall of Fame and then, in March 2011, was inducted into the Merrill Baseball Hall of Fame. He was employed with the Wisconsin Window Unit Co., and retired as a sales representative for the Semling-Menke Co.
He leaves behind his wife, Jennie, Robinson; two daughters, Pam (Jeff) Hetfeld of Merrill and Debbie Sanders of Wausau; and one son, Brad ("Babber") Sanders of Merrill. He also leaves behind seven grandchildren, nine great-grandchildren and special nephew, Scott (Suzanne) Sanders of Minneapolis.
Arrangements were made by the Pulliam Funeral Home, Robinson, Ill.
"The day which we fear as our last is but the birthday of eternity."