Family and friends, colleagues, players and fans turned out to remember a legendary figure in college baseball–Coach John Winkin.
The Maine Hall of Famer spent decades coaching baseball at U-Maine, Husson, and right here at Colby.
“The thing that, for me, is the most important is the passion he had for what he was doing, and you find people who don’t enjoy going to work, they don’t have a passion for what they’re doing. This man, in what he’s doing, it’s not work. He never worked a day in his life because he was doing what he loved,” said Stump Merrill, Special Assistant to the General Manager for the New York Yankees, who worked with Winkin at Colby.
Most remembered him as a remarkably caring individual but tough when he needed to be.
“It was okay if you made a mistake of dropping a ball occasionally, but never make a mistake of knowing what to do or what the appropriate play is. So he taught that kind of discipline about life in everything he did, and he exemplified it in his own life more than he expected it from anyone else,” said Doug Brown, who played American Legion baseball for Winkin.
An example that lives on even after his death.
“He had a remarkable influence over so many people. And I think as they said here today, the people that he had influence on have had influence on other people, so it really has carried on,” said Brown.
In his fifty years of coaching, Winkin won more than a thousand games-a legend on and off the field.