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Triple-A Wichita majority owner Lou Schwechheimer dead at 62

Schwechheimer spent decades in Minor League Baseball and spearheaded the relocation of the Marlins Triple-A affiliate from New Orleans to Wichita.

Marlins fans are understandably frustrated that the team’s 2020 season has been abruptly suspended due to COVID-19, but Wednesday’s news is just the latest reminder that this pandemic must be taken with the utmost seriousness. The Wind Wind Surge announced the passing of majority owner and general partner Lou Schwechheimer, who had been infected with the virus.

Here is the full press release:

Wichita, KS – It is with the deepest sadness and sorrow that the Wichita Wind Surge organization announces the passing of the team’s majority owner and general partner, Lou Schwechheimer. Schwechheimer, 62, passed away this afternoon from complications related to Covid-19.

Schwechheimer was the driving force behind the return of affiliated baseball to Wichita and the construction of Riverfront Stadium. After spending 35 years with the Pawtucket Red Sox, helping to turn them into one of the elite minor league baseball franchises, Schwechheimer formed a group that purchased two minor league teams, the Single-A Charlotte Stone Crabs in the Florida State League and the AAA New Orleans Baby Cakes in the Pacific Coast League, who have since moved to Wichita, KS.

“There are no words to express the loss of the entire Wind Surge family,” said SVP/GM Jared Forma. “Lou was truly one of a kind, someone who never met a stranger. He will be deeply missed by his family and many friends, which included an extended baseball family. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Lou’s wife and daughter at this difficult time.

“The Wind Surge team will work tirelessly to fulfill Lou’s dreams and visions for the great city of Wichita, a place he was proud to call home. We will ensure his legacy lives forever at Riverfront Stadium,” Forma said.

The Wind Surge organization asks everyone to please respect the privacy of the Schwechheimer family during these difficult times.

Photo courtesy of Clinton Dick

It is impossible to overstate how passionate Schwechheimer was about the Wind Surge and the Marlins minor leaguers who would’ve been playing in Wichita. You could see it in his tweets (@LSchwechheimer) and in this interview he had with Fish On The Farm last offseason.

I will use the space below to share testimonies from people who can speak directly to Lou’s impact...