Rest in Triumphant Joy, Marie “Red” Mahoney

Red Mahoney had time to sign autographs for fans after the "women in baseball" panel discussion at the 44th Annual National SABR Convention in Houston. Summer of 2014

Red Mahoney had time to sign autographs for fans after the “women in baseball” panel discussion at the 44th Annual National SABR Convention in Houston.
Summer of 2014

The Game of Baseball, the City of Houston, and the State of Texas has surrendered one of its most precious citizens and, most importantly, America is now forced to say goodbye to one of the pioneer ground-breakers for women in competitive sports .

Emily Marie “Red” Mahoney passed away on Saturday, January 23, 2016 in Houston at 91, following a long period of several months in declining health. Until that time, “Red”Mahoney, one of the surviving former ground-breakers in the post World War II Women’s League ( the female baseball union that became so popular to contemporary movie audiences in “A League of Their Own” with Tom Hanks, had been an active participant in the Houston-based Larry Dierker Chapter of SABR, the Society for American Baseball Research.

Among numerous other honors, Red Mahoney was inducted into the Texas Baseball Hall of Fame in 2006. She also served importantly as a resource person on the history of women in baseball for our Houston SABR 2014 publication, “Houston Baseball: The Early Years, 1861-1961.”

For a more extensive history of her public accomplishments, please check out her current biography on Wikipedia:

I first met Red Mahoney ten years ago during my term as Board President of the Texas Baseball Hall of Fame.

Marie “Red” Mahoney was a delightful person to be around. She was a person of great integrity and humble grounded bearings. I think she saw herself as an everyday person who never felt the need to hide behind a public celebrity face, even though she had done some extraordinary things, but that doesn’t mean she was unaware or dismissive of her athletic abilities. I once asked Red, who was cute as a bug in her youth too, if she ever came close to getting married. “Not really,” she smiled. “I think the ones I might have cared to date were afraid that I might be too much competition for them on the baseball diamond. Back in the day, a lot of men used to only want women who ‘knew their place’, so to speak.”

We are grateful that you took your talents and life choices where your passions for baseball, softball, and golf were major to your heart’s desires and abilities. No old school guy was going to put you in the kitchen and leave you there. You never allowed it to happen. As a result, the world, especially the world of baseball, is all the richer for it.

We shall miss you, Red Mahoney, but we shall treasure our memories and the love-for-the-game-and-life presence that you brought into our lives forever.

Red’s funeral is scheduled for Saturday, February 6, 2016, in the Heights. Stay tuned and check the newspapers for further details.




4 Responses to “Rest in Triumphant Joy, Marie “Red” Mahoney”

  1. Mike McCroskey Says:

    Red was one of those rare people you meet in life, that you feel truly blessed to have known. She was special! Always had a smile and a hug for me. Godspeed, Red.

  2. Marsha Franty Says:

    What a privilege it was for me to become friends with Red! Time spent with her was always delightful, and it all started with the interview Mike Vance and I did with her as part of our research for our book. She truly enjoyed every SABR meeting as well as every trip to see the Astros and the Skeeters. I want to thank all of you who made her feel so special.

    • shinerbock80 Says:

      Yeah, Marsha, that day or two we spent hanging out at Red’s just hearing her stories and looking through photos was terrific. And I think she really enjoyed talking and laughing about all of it, too. It was certainly a joy to have known Red.

  3. Anthnony Cavender Says:

    The Chronicle published a very nice story on Red this morning. Our chapter’s embrace of her over the years was wonderful.

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