Inducted November 16, 1991
Charlie, upon his arrival in St. John’s in 1947, as a United States Serviceman, immediately commenced to dedicate thirty years of service as a player, umpire, coach and executive to the development of baseball in Newfoundland.
When baseball was revived in St. John’s in 1947 Charlie was instrumental in arranging exhibition games between the Pepperell Peppers and St. John’s All Stars. He was also the driving force in the acceptance of the Pepperell Peppers into the St. John’s League. Charlie at this time was their coach and playing against the Peppers significantly improved the calibre of play of the St. John’s players.
In 1954 Charlie was one of the founding members of the St. John’s Baseball Umpires Association and was its first Vice-President. He made a tremendous contribution to the development and improvement of baseball umpires in St. John’s.
Charlie’s greatest contribution to baseball however has been as a coach. In 1961 Charlie became the first coach in the history of Newfoundland baseball to win the McCormack Trophy, symbolic of the Newfoundland Baseball Championship, three times. In subsequent years 1964 and 1966 he again coached the St. John’s Capitals and won the McCormack Trophy for a total of five Newfoundland Championships which is unprecedented in the history of Newfoundland baseball.
Charlie became coach of the Feildian Baseball Team in 1958. His knowledge of the game and coaching techniques were twenty years ahead of any other baseball coach in Newfoundland at that time. It is only recently that T-Ball has become popular for minor baseball in Newfoundland. Yet in 1958 Charlie Riddle showed up at the Feildian Grounds with his homemade wooden plate, lead pipe and rubber hose and the players would spend hours hitting off a batting tee.
Charlie’s success as a coach was due to his immense knowledge of the game, his exceptional personality, his ability to establish a rapport with his players and the respect his players had for his leadership ability.
Charlie was the main person responsible for negotiating with the St. John’s Lions Club to put the present Lions Club Park in place in St. John’s for softball.