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'One Of The Greatest Power Hitters Ever': Phillies, Baseball Community Mourns Loss Of Legend Dick Allen

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- The Phillies and baseball community is mourning the loss of legend Dick Allen. Allen passed away Monday at his home in Wampum, Pennsylvania.

He was 78. No cause of death was given.

Former Phillies players and executives shared their stories and memories of Allen.

"I didn't get to spend a lot of time with Dick Allen, but the moments spent with him were always life lessons! He came to see me a number of times before I made it to the majors, but you would only notice him if you looked way up in the corner of the ballpark, where you would see a shadow of a man in a sweatsuit, a hat and some shades on! That's when I first learned who he was and about HIS story," former Phillie Jimmy Rollins said. "Always gracious and always willing to answer any question you had, but if you turned away for even one minute, he'd be gone. Dick never seemed to want any attention, he'd just go see the people he wanted to see and talk to the ones he wanted to talk to and then return to wherever he came from. I am honored to have always been part of that select group of people that he decided he wanted to see and have a conversation with. Rest easy, my friend."

"Dick was one of the greatest power hitters ever. He combined the type of strength and quickness in his hands and wrists that doesn't come along too often. We will always remember the monster home runs he hit at Connie Mack Stadium. I always enjoyed being in Dick's company and sharing some laughs with him," former Phillies owner Ruly Carpenter said.

"A great man passed away this morning, much too soon. We lost a friend, a teammate and a mentor. Thanks to John Middleton and the Phillies, Dick's career has been acknowledged as one of the best of all time. Appropriately, no one will ever wear No. 15 again. He will always hold a special place in my career, from watching him in college, then being a teammate, and finally being a part of his number retirement ceremony. Hopefully, Dick's career will soon be honored by the National Baseball Hall of Fame," former Phillie Mike Schmidt said.

"My dad thought Dick was one of the greatest athletes he ever played with and, up until Mike Schmidt came along, was the best third baseman he had ever seen on both sides of the ball," former general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said. "On a personal level, I remember being in the clubhouse in Veterans Stadium when Dick was playing first base and meeting him and thinking this is the biggest human being on the planet with the biggest hands ever! As I got to work with Dick in the Phillies front office, I started to understand how misunderstood he was when he was in his prime. I offer my condolences to Willa and the rest of the Allen family. He will be joining some very special people in Phillies Heaven."

"A lot of people didn't really know Dick the way me and the guys in the '70s knew him. We had read all the stuff about how he wasn't a good guy, but we never saw any of that. Dick was a great teammate and a great tutor for us. He couldn't have been more open with us as young players and was actually the complete opposite of everything we had read. I'll really miss him," former manager Larry Bowa said.


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