Now here is something I didn't know: the 1992 movie, "A League of Their Own," was based on a 1987 documentary by the same name that was produced about four years earlier by Kelly Candaele, the son of one of the players, Helen "Callaghan" Candaele Saint Aubin. I've ordered the movie and will take notes and add to this essay when I've seen it.
Helen was born on this day in 1929 in Vancouver, BC, Canada. She and her sister Margaret were recruited for the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League when Helen was only 15. Interestingly, over ten percent of the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League was Canadian.
Since there were several sets of sisters playing ball in the league, the characters portrayed in the movie by Geena Davis and Lori Petty weren't necessarily based on Helen and Marge. You could ask Kelly, since he wrote the movie and is still around and visible.
Anyway, Helen was quite a woman. During her heyday with the Fort Wayne Daisies, the left-handed outfielder batted .299 and was called "the Ted Williams of Women's Baseball." She married twice and had four sons, one of whom is Casey Candaele who was a professional ball player for several years with lifetime earnings in the game of over 2 million dollars; obviously he was a respectable player if not a big star.
Without diminishing Helen's accomplishments, Helen Candaele doesn't figure all that prominently online in the history of the girls' league--there were players who were far more flashy and well-known. Dottie Collins, who played until 1948 for the Daisies, not only has interviews online but her home address in case you want to write. I love that.
Helen died of breast cancer December 8, 1992. I think she lived long enough to see the movie that made her league, if not her, famous again. The AAGPBL played its last game, its 12th year, in 1954.
Here's something kind of fun to read--it's the manual given to the girl players outlining expectations for good grooming and general behavior. Dated, certainly, but not as obnoxious as I would have expected. Of course, when you think about the behavior of the male players today, and well before the girls, it becomes more laughable.