Glenn Laudenslager III, who has been the coordinator for the Monroe Men’s 35 and over softball league for the past 10 years, has been umpiring and scheduling umpires for adult softball games for the Monroe Parks and Recreation Department for a total of 32 years.
His dedication to the sport has not gone unnoticed. Laudenslager won the Above and Beyond the Call of Duty Award at the Connecticut Recreation and Parks Association’s 63rd Annual Conference, held at the Mohegan Sun Convention Center on Nov. 20 and 21.
Missy Orosz, director of the Monroe Parks and Recreation Department, nominated Laudenslager for the honor.
“Glenn has a gentle soul and loves softball so much,” she wrote in her nomination letter to the CRPA Awards Committee. “He is there for our Friday night program every week keeping an eye on all the games, as well as the 146 players, countless fans and coordinating the umpires. At times he can be seen umpiring if necessary and handling any situation that can arise.”
Laudenslager also schedules umpires for other surrounding communities such as Trumbull and Shelton, according to Orosz.
“What makes Glenn so unique is that back in the Spring of 2019 he suffered a stroke which left him paralyzed on one side,” Orosz said. “He didn’t let that stop him, even though he had to miss the rest of that season. He worked so hard from the hospital, answering calls, doing emails, scheduling games, which forced him in therapy to go the extra mile to work harder.”
Orosz said Laudenslager had trouble with his speech, leg and arm movement, but was determined to steadily improve that year.
“We told him he didn’t need to continue and that he should take a break, but he refused,” she said. “Glenn continued to press on and work with his therapist to become stronger, but with still limited mobility he struggles a bit. Then in Spring 2020 we were pressed with the Covid-19 situation that saw our league struggle to get off the ground with all the limitations and unknowns of how to safely play.”
Orosz said Laudenslager stepped up once again, following state and local health protocols and procedures to ensure the men had a fun and safe league to play in, while he struggled with his own medical issues.
“He never wavered or complained,” she said.
Orosz said Laudenslager continued to coordinate everything for the league by holding meetings, setting the schedule and handling problems every season leading up to this one.
“You will find him at our ballfields being a part of everything,” she said. “The difference is he is walking a bit slower with his cane.” Orosz said Laudenslager’s wife Mary can be seen at his side, serving as the town’s unofficial softball assistant coordinator by default.
Despite any physical limitations, Orosz said Laudenslager still has “a heart of gold and a quick wit.”
“No one dares question his decisions when there are controversial calls and all the men give him the highest respect,” she said. “I feel strongly that he should receive this award for his determination and love for men’s softball, our Monroe Community and for living his life to the fullest.”
Several of Laudenslager’s family members attended the ceremony, including his wife Mary and a few of their children: Charles Laudenslager, Sean Laudenslager, Glenn Laudenslager IV and Krisanne Leventakos.
Orosz also attended the ceremony, along with First Selectman Terry Rooney, Parks and Recreation Commission Chairman Jonathan Stone, commission member and fellow umpire Andy Csire, and Recreation Program Supervisor Connor Negri.
The 2023 award marks the third year in a row Monroe’s department was honored. In 2022, The Monroe Playground Foundation received the Selected Organization Award and in 2021 Rick Henderson received the Volunteer of the Year Award.
“It is very exiting to see the Monroe Parks and Recreation Department being recognized on the state level by the membership of CRPA and the awards nominating committee made up of peers in the field of parks and recreation,” Orosz said.
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