Inductees McCord, one of the nation's most respected softball personalities, excelled as an athlete, official, manager and commissioner. He also received the coveted Neve Harms Award for meritorious service to sports.
McCord was closely aligned with softball since 1947 when he was named manager of the then Caterpillar Dieselettes. From then until he retired as field manager after the 1972 season, his teams won 886 games, lost just 201 and competed in 18 national tournaments. He served as Illinois State Softball Commissioner from 1953 to 1983.
Along the way his 1953 team won 29 games in succession, his 1955 team was 37-1 for the regular season and the 1964 team won 31 in succession.
McCord is a member of both the National Amateur Softball Association and Illinois Hall of Fame. During his long career he had conducted clinics abroad, has served as adminstrative manager of the Pan-American games for softball and has served on many committees of the ASA.
McCord, one of the nation's most respected softball personalities, excelled as an athlete, official, manager and commissioner. He also received the coveted Neve Harms Award for meritorious service to sports.
Hockey was a sport local fans could watch only if they went to Chicago or St. Louis until BardezBanian founded the Peoria Stars in 1959.
The two were with the Pekin Stars until 1970, when they formed the Peoria Blades, on the outdoor rink at Logan, in 1971. The Logan "bubble" went up the next year and the Blades, through membership in the Continental League, gave Peoria a solid taste of hockey.
BardezBanian played with the Blades for a few years, then became president while Olson always served as the team's general manager.
And the two gave hockey a boost whenever they could. BardezBanian coached the Bradley University club team for many years and both were instrumental in starting and maintaining youth hockey in Pekin and Peoria.
Both are now retired, Olson from Caterpillar's Mossville plant and BardezBanian from a management position with the City of Peoria.