NORFOLK, Va. - As an executive for the team for more than a half-century, Dave Rosenfield is a major reason there's professional baseball in Hampton Roads. Monday, the Norfolk Tides former general manager was celebrated in the ballpark he helped bring to Norfolk.
"He was an extremely important mentor to me when I didn't have a large bandwagon following me," explained Pittsburgh Pirates manager Clint Hurdle, who skipped a spring training game to attend Rosenfield's memorial. "There was no way I wouldn't find my way here to share my respects for Dave."
The Tides hosted a memorial service for Rosenfield Monday, March 6th inside Harbor Park. Rosenfield, who served as the General Manager of the Tides from 1963-2011, passed away Tuesday night at 87 years old after complications from a heart attack.
The memorial service was open to the public and featured speakers including Former Norfolk Mayor Paul Fraim, International League President Randy Mobley, Baltimore Orioles Executive VP Dan Duquette and Hurdle.
"He was the first phone call when I got fired, he was the first phone call when my son graduated from college," recalled former Major League manager Bobby Valentine, who managed the Tides on two occasions. "Boatloads and train loads and populations across the country wish they were here today, because Dave touched them in a positive way."
"This man may have impacted more men in uniform than anyone else in the game," Hurdle added.
In lieu of flowers, the family has asked for donations to be made to the Hampton Roads Prostate Cancer Health Forum, a charity Rosenfield championed after being diagnosed with the disease in 2015.