SILVER SPRING, Md. (WDVM) – With so many impressive schools, athletes and coaches, Montgomery County has its fair share of sports success stories. This year, the Montgomery County Sports Hall of Fame is inducting its second class. Over the next week, leading up to the virtual induction ceremony on Sunday, October 18, we’ll introduce you to each of the six inductees.
Today’s inductee is retired Major League Baseball player and John F. Kennedy high school grad Curtis Pride.
Making it to the majors is an accomplishment itself. It was even more special for Curtis Pride, who spent seven years in the New York Mets minor league system.
“I was this close to quitting because everything did not go the way that I wanted it to go,” Pride said. “I was dealing with different problems and now looking back, I’m just glad that I never gave up.”
Pride was born 95 percent deaf, but made up for his lack of hearing with hard work, determination and incredible athletic ability.
“Looking back at my life. I’ve come a long way,” Pride said. “Overcoming my deafness to be able to realize my major league dream.”
Pride played for six MLB teams over 13 years. He’s the only deaf player in the modern era. His most meaningful moment came in 1993 after earning his first major league hit: a pinch hit 2-run double for the Montreal Expos in the middle of a pennant race.
“Standing on second base after I got that hit and getting a standing ovation for five minutes and it was so emotional and I just get goosebumps just thinking about it,” Pride recalled.
Pride is now in his 13th season as head coach of the Gallaudet University Baseball Team. He preaches the message to his players and anyone else that faces a hearing impairment, that it can’t stop you from achieving your goals.
“They should not allow people to tell them what they can or can not do and that they always should believe in themselves and that they’re capable of doing whatever they want to do as long as they set their minds to it,” Pride said.
The induction ceremony will be held virtually on Sunday, October 18, at 7 p.m. They will run an online auction from Tuesday to Sunday, supporting the goal of building a better community through sports. You can find more info on the Montgomery County Sports Hall of Fame website.
On Monday, we’ll introduce you to another inductee. The other five inductees are:
- Johnny Holiday – Voice of the Maryland Terrapins
- Amy Wood – Legendary Bethesda-Chevy Chase field hockey head coach
- Tom Brown – Three-time Super Bowl Champion, Blair high school grad
- Jeri Ingram – Former professional tennis player, Springbrook and UMD star
- Roy Lester – Legendary football coach at UMD and multiple schools in Montgomery Co.