Terry “Tito” Landrum

by Mike Magers

Terry Landrum is from Albuquerque, New Mexico and graduated from Highland High School.  He was a good high school athlete with a desire to play professional baseball, despite not playing the sport in high school.  Landrum wanted to attend junior college rather than a four year college, but he caught the eye of the baseball coach of a small school, Eastern Oklahoma State College in Wilbarton.  However, only a couple of months into his freshman year,  he signed as an undrafted free agent with the St. Louis Cardinals baseball club.

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Tom Brookshier

by Mike Magers

Thomas Jefferson Brookshier was raised in Roswell (Chavez County), New Mexico.  He was an All-State player in football, basketball and baseball at Roswell High School.  Tom went on to be a three year letterman (1950-1952) in football at University of Colorado, playing defense, offense and special teams.  He was known as one of the fiercest hitters in the Big 7 Conference, earning first-team all Big 7 as a junior and senior.  He was also a relief pitcher on the Buffaloes’ baseball team.  At his memorial service, teammate Frank Bernardi joked, “He had a really good fastball; he just never knew where it was going!”

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Vern Stephens

by Mike Magers

[Vernon Stephens is not a product of New Mexico schools, but from time to time we will write about such people and hope you enjoy the diversion.]

Vernon Decatur Stephens, Jr. was born in tiny McAlister (Quay County), New Mexico. He was known as “Junior” and was the son of a minor league umpire, Vernon Stephens, Sr., who was a farmer by trade. Born in Oklahoma Territory, Vernon, Sr. and his wife Grace decided to head west in 1920, getting as far as New Mexico where Vernon, Jr. was prematurely delivered. This, however, is likely Junior’s only connection with New Mexico, as the family continued on west, eventually settling in Long Beach, California. Consequently, we will only do this brief sketch about him. If you would like to read more about him, please see the excellent article on Vern from SABR, the Society for American Baseball Research, written by Mark Armour.

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