Where there was one, there was usually the other. They were a team, Lucy and Postie.
"No doubt, they were in love with each other," said one of their friends, Paul Iovine of Baltic, a few years back.
Dave Post was the longtime manager of the Thomaston Spoilers of the Tri-State Baseball League and was inducted into the league's Hall of Fame in 2010. His wife, Lucy, was the scorekeeper, videographer, team mom.
They were together since high school, for the past 40 years, but ironically, neither of them could remember the actual date when they were married. The date wasn't important, they insisted; it was a quickie ceremony by a justice of the peace on a baseball field in Amenia, N.Y., sometime in the mid-'90s so Lucy could get covered by Dave's insurance for an operation she needed.
Lucy had cancer. She battled it for years, but it spread from her stomach to her lungs, and she just couldn't hang on any longer. She died July 12 at age 55.
Without Lucy, Postie is devastated.
"She was my best friend," he said Thursday. "She was my balance. I had so many ballplayers on my teams who were tough guys, guys who could clean out bars, but she was the toughest person I ever met in my life. She was amazing."
She had to be tough. Hell, she lived with Postie — colorful, volatile, unpredictable, baseball-loving Postie — who, like Lucy, had a soft spot for stray animals and always wore his big heart on the sleeve of his XL shirt.
Lucy was a saint, people will say, for putting up with him. Postie has long said she was the best thing that ever happened to him.
They met at a baseball game in Torrington. He was 16. She was 15. Postie, an All-State left-handed pitcher for Thomaston High whose fastball was once clocked at 91 mph, was a pitcher for the Thomaston American Legion team. Lucy's dad enjoyed baseball and took her to watch the game.
Postie came out of the game and his coach told him to put his jacket on between innings. Annoyed, Postie threw his jacket and it landed on Lucy's head. She was smitten.
"We did the normal kid stuff," Lucy said a few years ago.
"Driving around, drinking beer," Postie said. "A lot of baseball games."
Postie, who had tryouts with the Cincinnati Reds and the Chicago Cubs before a bicycle accident damaged his shoulder, started his own team, the Spoilers, in 1985. Lucy, who never had any interest in playing sports, had already started keeping score at his softball games. She became the Spoilers' scorekeeper.
"She's good at it," Dave said in 2010. "She enjoyed it. Guys from other teams would come over and say, 'Ask Lucy what she scored.'"
Postie enjoyed arguing as much as he did playing baseball and got into more than a few altercations. Once he was suspended by the league for chasing a heckler into the stands at Fuessenich Park in Torrington — and then promptly had a heart attack, his third, in the parking lot. He used to hit himself in the helmet with his bat when he didn't swing at a good pitch.
Lucy's mantra at games: "'Dave, shut up. Dave. Shut. Up. Shut up, Dave' — that's all I say at games," she said in 2010.
The following spring, health issues caused Postie to hang up his spikes and he disbanded the Spoilers after 25 years. Lucy, who had been diagnosed with cancer 10 years earlier, was not well either.
Lucy, who worked as a hairstylist before health issues forced her to stop, was also a cat rescuer.
"She wasn't holding on for me," Postie said Thursday. "She was holding on for these cats. Those cats kept her going."
And Lucy kept Postie going. She did break his nose once in the late '70s after she saw him driving into town on his Harley with a pretty female hitchhiker on the back. (Postie swears to this day he was just giving the woman a ride, but Lucy didn't want to hear it.)
She propped him up; she calmed him down.
"She was the rock," he said. "I'm lost without her."
The story of Dave and Lucy Post will be featured as part of an upcoming book, "Covered Wooden Grandstands," an anecdotal look by various sportswriters at 120 years of semi-pro, amateur, sandlot, adult and town baseball leagues, teams and players in New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania. For more information about the book, contact editor/author Bruce Johnson at email@example.com.