WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) — The Wichita Wind Surge organization has announced the death of majority owner and general partner, Lou Schwechheimer, 62. A news release says he died this afternoon from complications related to COVID-19.

This is the news release:

It is with the deepest sadness and sorrow that the Wichita Wind Surge organization announces the passing of the team’s majority owner and general partner, Lou Schwechheimer.  Schwechheimer, 62, passed away this afternoon from complications related to Covid-19.

Schwechheimer was the driving force behind the return of affiliated baseball to Wichita and the construction of Riverfront Stadium.  After spending 35 years with the Pawtucket Red Sox, helping to turn them into one of the elite minor league baseball franchises, Schwechheimer formed a group that purchased two minor league teams, the Single-A Charlotte Stone Crabs in the Florida State League and the AAA New Orleans Baby Cakes in the Pacific Coast League, who have since moved to Wichita, KS.

“There are no words to express the loss of the entire Wind Surge family,” said SVP/GM Jared Forma.  “Lou was truly one of a kind, someone who never met a stranger. He will be deeply missed by his family and many friends, which included an extended baseball family. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Lou’s wife and daughter at this difficult time.

“The Wind Surge team will work tirelessly to fulfill Lou’s dreams and visions for the great city of Wichita, a place he was proud to call home.  We will ensure his legacy lives forever at Riverfront Stadium,” Forma said.

Former mayor Jeff Longwell said Schwechheimer became like family to him and he will always cherish the moments they were able to have at the new stadium.

“We enjoyed sitting at the stadium and just overlooking the freshly mowed grass, really enjoying the finish stadium sitting out there sometimes for a couple of hours and not saying a word,” said Longwell.

Todd Radom worked with Schwechheimer to help design the Wind Surge logo but their friendship goes back 15 years. Radom was devastated to hear of his passing.

“The world is a sad place without Lou being here with us,” said Radom. “He had this very rare gift of allowing every voice to be heard and everyone to feel like they got their input in but he was resolute in his leadership. He was always positive.”

The Wind Surge organization asks everyone to please respect the privacy of the Schwechheimer family during these difficult times.