The 2018 Western New York (WNY) Softball Hall of Fame is here, and among the surprises we have this year, is that it includes four local veterans. This was revealed by Mike Tofil, the president of the WNY chapter. The four local softballers ushered into the 2018 class are Wally Voss, Larry McFadden, Jeff Kubera, and Frank Gawronski.
Wally Voss, also known as the ‘Big Thunder,’ has been in the local softball scene for some time, and has won four championships with the First Ward Falcons. Among the most significant moments in his career are the three home run and eight run batted in (RBI) game at Eden Corn Festival. He has also participated in several local competitions including Dunkirk, Erie, and Lackawanna.
The second entrant in the Class of 2018, is Larry McFadden, popularly known as ‘Oz.’ The lad has played for some of the top teams including Lake Shore Delivery, 3D Grocery, and Aldrich Dairy, among others. McFadden has participated in almost all the championships and has won the Fredonia and Dunkirk leagues.
Third in the list is Jeff Kubera, also known as ‘Jitty,’ who has been in local softball for over two decades. Even though he was on the fastpitch scene at first, he beat the odds and became a crucial figure in the Falcon team, that was first runner-up in the Dunkirk and Buffalo Queen City competitions. He has also won over 150 tournaments throughout his career.
Last is Frank Gawronski, and even though softball was his favorite, he also played basketball, football, and baseball. With a career sprawling to over 20 years in local softball, Gawronski has won almost everything that’s there to be won. Besides his role in active softball, he has also coached a few teams and even won the New York State Championship with Dunkirk Girls Senior High School.