March 15, 2017
Russell Louis Goetz, age 86 of McKeesport, died Wednesday, March 15, 2017. He was born Saturday, May 31, 1930 to father Herbert J. Goetz and mother Edith (Rotzsch) Goetz in McKeesport, PA, the third of three sons, following brothers Raymond and Robert. Russ graduated from McKeesport High School in June 1948 participating in many school activities including a member of the high school basketball team. He went on to enlist in the United States Navy serving from October 1950 through November 1954, earning the US Navy National, US Navy Korea Defense, US Navy United Nations Korea, and US Navy China Service Medals. Graduating from the Bill McGowan umpiring school in San Diego, California in 1955, Russ began his 29-year career as a professional baseball umpire, calling the game he loved in the Georgia State League in 1955 and 1956, Carolina League in 1957 and 1958, South Atlantic League from 1959 to 1961 and the Pacific Coast League from 1962 to 1967. On Wednesday, April 10, 1968 Russ umpired his first of 2,384 Major League baseball games as the 1967 AL Champion Boston Red Sox defeated the to-be 1968 World Series Champion Detroit Tigers 7 to 3 at Tiger Stadium in Detroit. During his well-traveled major league career from 1968 to 1983, all with the American League, Russ umpired in two All Star Games 1970 (Cincinnati) and 1975 (Milwaukee), four American League play-off series, 1970 (Twins vs Orioles), 1974 (Orioles vs A’s), 1977 (Royals vs Yankees), 1981 (A’s vs Yankees) and two World Series, 1973 (Mets vs A’s) and 1979 (Orioles vs Pirates) wearing uniform number 5 when AL adopted uniform numbers in 1980. He was inducted into the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame in 1989. Throughout his life, Russell was actively involved in the American Legion, Lions Club International, Boy Scouts of America, Rotary Club and the McKeesport Daily News baseball league. Russell Louis Goetz is survived by his wife, Dorothy (Genard) Goetz; ex-wife Elizabeth; son, Paul K. (Lisa) Goetz of Gaithersburg, MD; adopted children, Carl, John and Lisa; 5 grandchildren and 1 great grandchild. Friends will be received Friday, March 17th from 3-7 PM at Striffler’s of White Oak Cremation & Mortuary Services, Inc., 1100 Lincoln Way, White Oak, PA 15131 (Sue Striffler Galaski, Supervisor) 412-678-6177 where services will be held Saturday at 9 AM with Pastor Glenn Irvin officiating. Burial will follow at McKeesport & Versailles Cemetery.
Russell Louis Goetz, age 86 of McKeesport, died Wednesday, March 15, 2017. He was born Saturday, May 31, 1930 to father Herbert J. Goetz and mother Edith (Rotzsch) Goetz in McKeesport, PA, the third of three sons, following brothers Raymond... View Obituary & Service Information
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