Position: Umpire

Ray Mcllquham

Class of 2020

Lafayette 1946; Lafayette Badgers 1948; Lafayette Giants 1949-50; Hamilton Chevrolets 1955-56; Lake Hallie Lakers 1957; Chippewa Falls Triangle Sports 1958; Seymour 1959; Cadott Red Sox 1961

Umpire 1962-1984

During a league career that spanned nearly forty years and touched five different decades, Ray McIlquham carved out his place in CRBL lore, first as a solid catcher for 10 seasons and then during a commendable 23 season run as a league umpire.

Breaking in to the Chippewa County League in 1946 with the Lafayette team, Ray played 10 seasons as a backstop for eight different teams, with his last year of competition coming with the Cadott Red Sox in 1961.

As a member of the successful Hamilton Chevrolets of Chippewa Falls during the 1950’s, Ray was a part-time player for the 1955 Chevrolet crew that went 11 and 1, securing the North Division before beating the Lake Hallie Lakers 12 to 9 in the C.V.L. championship game. The 1955 “Chevs” would go on to win their opening WBA contest before being eliminated. McIlquham’s other title experience came in 1959 when as a full-time player, he hit .318 (14 for 44) for the 10 and 2 Seymour club, as they claimed the South Division (there was no C.V.L championship in 1959) and qualified for the WBA tournament.

Playing well before the advent of All-CRBL recognition, Ray appeared in two All-Star games (1957 and 1959) and hit over .300 in three seasons (1948, 1958, 1959) with a high of .333 in 1958 (14 for 42).

Hanging up his spikes after 1961, McIlquham became a Chippewa Valley League umpire in 1962. Respected and well-liked by players, he admirably served in that capacity for 23 seasons, bridging an era that saw the 1968 evolution of the Chippewa Valley League in to the current day moniker of the Chippewa River Baseball League.

When Ray’s last year calling balls and strikes came in 1984, it concluded one of the longest tenures of involvement by any individual throughout the league’s storied existence. With his induction, McIlquham officially takes his place as one of the immortal legends in Chippewa River Baseball League history.

George Gannon

Inaugural Class of 2009

Shortstop, 3rd Baseman, Umpire

Lafayette Badgers 1948; Lafayette Braves 1951-55,57-59; Bloomer Pines 1956; Lafayette Generals 1962-64;

Lafayette Indians 1965-70; CRBL Umpire 1970-95

One of the most well-known, well-liked, and well-respected figures in league history, the knowledgeable and personable Gannon was a fixture in league play for nearly fifty years.

Forgotten by many is that Gannon was a hard-nosed and formidable player for 19 seasons.  Upon retiring in 1970, he was the league’s all-time leader in games played, at-bats, hits, singles, doubles, RBI’s, runs scored, stolen bases, walks, and total bases.

Hitting primarily out of the lead-off spot, Gannon led the league in runs scored with 20 in 1963, 18 in 1964, 15 in 1966, and 16 in 1968.  Led the league with 16 walks in 1965 and 12 free passes in 1966.  His hit totals of 24 in 1964 and 25 in 1965 both set the pace among league hitters for those seasons.  Had over 20 hits in a season four times, with his career high of 25 in 1965.  Won two batting titles, hitting .414 in 1964 (24 for 58) and .397 in 1965 (25 for 63).  Hit over .300 eight times, with his .414 mark in 1964 being a personal high.

A key figure on the highly competitive Lafayette teams of the 1950’s and 1960’s, he helped the Generals win a division title, qualify for the WBA, and make the Final 8 in 1963.  In 1966, he hit .300 for an Indians team that won their first Eastern Division title and qualified for their first WBA tournament.

A participant in eight All-Star games, (1951, 1952, 1954, 1957, 1958, 1963, 1964, 1965) George played in the era before the All-CRBL awards became a yearly institution.

A highly respected official, George umpired admirably in league play for over 25 years, capping off an involvement in the CRBL that stretched across seven decades.