Posted: Friday, November 18, 2022. 3:07 pm CST.
Photo Credit: Patricia Bennett, the Belize Amateur Softball Association magazine
By Rubén Morales Iglesias: Belize softball legend and renowned educator Patricia Bennett passed away on Friday morning in Belize City.
Bennett was a member of the International Softball Federation and World Baseball and Softball Confederation Hall of Fame. Her international recognition came for her exceptional representation of Belize in international softball and her role as president of the Belize Softball Federation.
Pat, as she was known to her friends, was a member of the Gold Medal Belize Women’s National Softball Team which won the 1974 Central American and Caribbean Games softball championship in Puerto Rico and also a member of the Bronze Medal Belize National Team at the Pan American Games in 1979 in Mexico City where Belize defeated the United States of America.
“The legendary Belizean softball player and gold medalist Pat Bennett has died,” said sportswriter Bilal Morris in a social media post.
“We pay tribute to her today for remarkable athletic skills in Belizean sports and as one of the gold medalists who won the 1974 Central American Games. There never be Belizean athletes like her and her colleagues. Live on in spirit Pat!”
“We’ve lost a giant in sports for softball,” said Jude Lizama, President of the Belize Softball Federation to Breaking Belize News (BBN).
“Pat was a role model for young women in softball. She was a very dedicated player and eventually also a coach. Then, as an administrator, as a past president of the softball federation she impacted a lot of people, especially young females and males. In her early years she was one of the first persons to champion Little League Baseball in Belize in the early 1980s.”
Lizama recalled that as a past president of the Belize Softball Federation she was inducted into the International Softball Federation’s Hall of Fame.
“We will definitely miss her because she was always very supportive in assisting and guiding and giving her contribution and experiences for the betterment of softball, always willing to contribute her expertise,” Lizama said.
Morris wrote in an article in 2020 in which he said Bennett, who played for Dunrite and for the Belize National Women’s Team, was a fabulous base stealer.
“She was known for her great speed and base steals, and probably the Belizean athlete that wrote the “softball book of steals” so to speak that she is remembered for,” Morris said.
“She possessed the athletic ability of sliding like an ice skater on dry grass and ground at Belize’s Rogers Stadium and MCC Grounds to beat the opposing team defenders.”
Also well known as an educator, Bennett had been suffering from cancer.
Lizama said Bennett’s will be greatly missed.
“It’s definitely a sad time for us in the Belize Softball community because she has contributed so much and was in a position to contribute a lot going forward. We will definitely miss her. We wish Leslie Rogers, Greg Moguel, and her other brother, Errol Bennett, we extend our sincerest condolences to them.”
May Pat Bennett rest in peace!
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