2022 N.C. American Legion Hall of Fame class has 3 local products, banquet will be held in Belmont in 2023

By Richard Walker

The North Carolina American Legion Hall of Fame class of 2022 has been announced and it includes two Gaston County inductees, one from Lincoln County and the banquet will be held in Belmont.

Danny Eaker of Cherryville Post 100, Phil Tate of Belmont Post 144 and Bruce Bolick of Denver Post 455 will be inducted along with Gerald Young of Charlotte Post 262 and the late Benedict Lee of Calabash Post 503.

The banquet site and date will be announced sometime in early 2023.

Bolick, who played Legion baseball for the old Paw Creek-Mount Holly team in the early 1960s, started the Denver Post 455 program in 1990. Now called the Lincoln County Cardinals, Bolick has guided the team to 284 victories with Post 455 and has 290 Legion coaching victories overall.

Tate, who played Legion baseball for Belmont Post 144 in the early 1960s, coached Belmont, Charlotte Post 262 and Gaston Braves Post 144-266 during his coaching career; He led Belmont to 105 victories, Post 262 to 60 wins and Post 144-266’s inaugural 1997 team to 13 victories.

Eaker, who played Legion baseball for Cherryville Post 100 in the early 1960s, has been the public address announcer for Cherryville High School and Cherryville Legion baseball games since 1985. The current chaplain for Post 100, Eaker also has done radio broadcasts of countless Legion games, including the American Legion World Series in 2003, 2008 and every year since 2011.

Bolick is the first inductee in Post 455 history, while Tate will become Belmont’s seventh and Eaker will become Cherryville’s 16th.

The N.C. American Legion Baseball Hall of Fame began in 1967.