TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) — Just hours before his 70th birthday, former Wayne Newton Post 346 baseball manager John Hayes received a very special gift. State Representative Bob Heaton presented Hayes with Indiana’s highest honor, the Sagamore of the Wabash.
Hayes was given the award Friday night at the Legion post during an open house to honor his 31 years of service as the Post 346 baseball manager. The event also served as a reunion for the 2006 team that finished runner-up in the American Legion World Series, under Hayes’ direction.
Several of Hayes’ former players attended the event, including the Houston Astros’ A.J. Reed, current free agent Brady Shoemaker and Koby Kraemer, who played professionally.
Oakland A’s catcher Josh Phegley had planned to attend, but was unable to make it. His father, John Phegley, presented Hayes with an autographed jersey on his behalf.
In all, more than 100 people attended to the ceremony to honor Hayes.