December 15 – Happy Birthday Francis “Dutch” Howlan

HowlanThe call came from his best friend, Amsterdam attorney Robert Sise. It was March of 1953 and Francis “Dutch” Howlan, a Rug City native was working as a physical education instructor and recreation director at a state school for handicapped children on Staten Island. Sise had bad news and some great advice for his buddy. He told him Alex Isabel, the highly respected athletic director and coach of baseball and basketball at Amsterdam’s St, Mary’s Institute had suffered a sudden heart attack and died. I’m sure the news stunned and saddened Howlan because he had played both sports under Isabel during his own high school days at SMI, which ended in 1943…

You can read the rest of my story about Dutch in my new book “A Year’s Worth of Amsterdam Birthdays.” To order your copy, click here.

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