Mary Pratt, one of the inspirations for young athletes, as well as the film A League of Their Own, died at the age of 101. She was the last surviving member of the Rockford Peaches, a team in the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League. She was also a teacher for more than 40 years and fought for equality in women's sports.
Pratt died peacefully in her sleep on May 6, per the Patriot Ledger, and the AAGPBL released a statement on May 8. "We are terribly sad to report that former Rockford Peaches and Kenosha Comets pitcher, Mary Pratt passed away on May 6th. She was 101 years old. Mary was the last known original Peaches player that played on the 1943 team. Her stories, her energy will be missed for a long time."
Following the confirmation from Pratt's nephew, fans mourned on social media. There were several that had personal interactions with the baseball player while others recognized the impact that she had on the sport. They were saddened by her death and immediately wanted to honor the memory of a "true pioneer."
I was talking to my mother about Mary Pratt today. She said when she played against her, my mom was 15, Mary Pratt was about 35, and it was the first windmill pitcher she had ever faced. “I thought I was going to die...but she was VERY nice.” #RIPMaryPratt https://t.co/b5xCVJU0yX— Dan Kelley (@DanKelley66) May 10, 2020
Oh, no; this news really hurts. In 2014, I burst into tears watching my daughter, a softball player who grew up watching A League of Their Own, shake Mary Pratt’s hand at our National Girls & Women in Sports Day ceremony. Different kind of tears today.— Lyn Dohaney (@lyndo61) May 9, 2020
Mary Pratt was the last living Rockford Peach. She was a Kenosha Comet. She was a 20-game winner. She threw a no-hitter. She was a teacher for more than 40 years. She was a legend. She was in a league of her own.
Sing on Mary. RIP pic.twitter.com/oRDOF747nl— Freddie Benson (@DeeH_NYC) May 9, 2020
A true pioneer. I wish the league was still around. May you Rest In Peace— Miriam (@PaulasFootsteps) May 11, 2020
Born 1919. Good one— Marc 🇺🇸 (@Marc_ife) May 11, 2020
RIP Mary Pratt, who threw a no-hitter, had a 20-win season and still knew the Rockford Peaches anthem by heart: "Oh, we’re all in bed by 10 o’clock, that is a dirty lie/We are the Rockford ballclub, our motto Do or Die." Yes, there is crying in baseball: https://t.co/aRDDxXHwEA— Harrison Smith (@harrisondsmith) May 11, 2020
The Hall of Fame remembers Mary Pratt, who starred in the @aagpbl as a member of the original 1943 Rockford Peaches and later with the Kenosha Comets. Pratt, pictured in the front row, fourth from the left, passed away on Wednesday. https://t.co/DykT88BdRf pic.twitter.com/Ry6Nl4DIOv— National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum ⚾ (@baseballhall) May 8, 2020
Mary was one of our Quincy, MA neighbors. She was a remarkable woman who worked tirelessly for equality in womens’ sports. RIP:(— Barney’s Nana is Mad as Hell (@Deedeediner1) May 9, 2020
God speed young lady ♥️— Jacqueline LaFrance🇨🇦🇨🇦🇨🇦🇨🇦🇨🇦 (@JLaFrance10) May 9, 2020
Sad to hear of the passing of Mary Pratt. A true pioneer and role model - her dedication and passion were second to none. Loved seeing her at GWS Day - always left uplifted and with a smile. She carried the torch for many years, its our turn now! RIP pic.twitter.com/FUWvjP0JLd— Mary Ryan, Rkpt FH Coach (@mairery13) May 10, 2020
I had the opportunity to meet Mary Pratt at the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2012... I have pictures with her and autographs... she was a hoot... told me she still want to play. R.I.P. Mary I will remember you always— Judy Orofino (@OrofinoJudy) May 9, 2020
2016 Hanging out with the great Mary Pratt who died today at 101 as last Rockford Peach, Womens Baseball! She swung my bat & advised me on pitching strategy. Grateful for this pioneer, legend & friend. Def in league of her own @LottiRhode @thunderjam134 @efortier10 @BobRossiRITG pic.twitter.com/L9ut1malUh— Cassadie Armstrong (@sadieraye2024) May 10, 2020
One of the greatest moments was the creation of the All-American Professional Girls Baseball League. Mary Pratt is probably playing a game right now on the Lord’s team.— Crixus74BC (@ChrisCollard7) May 9, 2020
My Mom had the honor of knowing Mary Pratt. Her passion and enthusiasm for life and baseball, her stories and her enduring smile will be missed. RIP, Mary. ⚾️❤ @AAGPBL @BUAthletics @TerrierSoftball https://t.co/OEff6GQ3gw— The World According to Daisy (@SophiesWorld20) May 9, 2020
My kid and I have been watching A LEAGUE OF THEIR OWN on repeat for a week. RIP, Mary Pratt. You inspired generations of girls to do what they were told they couldn’t do.https://t.co/5d3dV4hLK5— Dara Resnik (@BadassMomWriter) May 11, 2020
What a life lived. What a story to be told. ❤️⚾️❤️ RIP Mary Pratt. https://t.co/PY5oAW1D6i— Ms. Dani, LAT, ATC (@MsDani_LAT_ATC) May 11, 2020