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‘He believed in Wichita’: Marlins Man remembers late minor league baseball owner Lou Schwechheimer who died of COVID-19

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WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – The Wichita Wind Surge is the Triple-A affiliate of the Miami Marlins. That team’s biggest fan, Laurence Leavy, better known as ‘Marlins Man’ was also a big fan of the late Wind Surge owner, Lou Schwechheimer.

Schwechheimer has died of complications from COVID-19, the team announced Wednesday.

He was someone who never met a stranger. If you had the pleasure of meeting him during his 62 years, just once, you’d feel like you’d known him for years – just ask the Marlins Man.

“This is the owner of the team. He’s not in a shirt. He’s not in a tie. He’s sitting at a fold out table in a trailer with his legs kicked back, just like a normal person,” said Leavy. “I love that.”

The long time owner was great at first impressions.

“Lou acted like it was his best friend and his brother, he had never met him before,” said Leavy.

The impression he made on Wichita, in the short time he called it home, will forever live on.

“He had other options of places to go. When he met with the people from Kansas, from Wichita, and how they welcomed him,” said Leavy. “He picked that place because he believed in Wichita.”

When America’s pastime does return to Wichita, Schwechheimer will be there in spirit, and the Marlins Man wouldn’t miss it for the world.

“It doesn’t matter what’s on my schedule,” said Leavy. “When they have opening day with fans, I’m going to be there, I’m going to salute him.”

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