Softball Player Profile: Bill McCoy

Larry Wolfe

A native of Rochester, Minnesota, home of the acclaimed Mayo Clinic, Bill McCoy spent all of his youth and young adulthood in the Gopher State. He graduated from Mayo High School where he played baseball for the Spartans before spending most of his free time “working on his own scholarship plan.” He then used that “scholarship” to attend Rochester Junior College before transferring to Mankato State, where he earned a degree in business administration.

Bill began his 40+ year career in the retail industry as a management trainee with Dayton’s Department Stores. He spent eight years in various management positions with that company before becoming a sales rep selling Pioneer and Hitachi products. He then became head buyer for Best Products in Richmond, Virginia. The company at its peak owned well over 200 catalog showroom retail stores. Next, Bill accepted a position with Pace Warehouse Clubs in Denver where he was Director of the Automotive and Electronics departments.

In 1989, Bill accepted a head buyer position with Smitty’s Groceries (now Fry’s Marketplace stores) in Phoenix. At this point, Arizona became his long-term home. Bill spent the final 23 years of his career as Director of Merchandising for SkyMall, Inc., the catalog publishing company that at one point had an annual circulation of over 20 million copies distributed in airplane seat pockets. Bill was responsible for selecting the merchandise that went into those catalogs.

Bill was married to his wife Barb for over 35 years, and they have a daughter who lives in Mesa. Sadly, Barb passed away eight years ago after a long battle with scleroderma, an autoimmune disease.

Softball, classic automobiles, Western movies, ‘60s rock ‘n’ roll and watching sports are some of Bill’s main interests. Bill says he’s played softball “forever,” including many years with industrial and church leagues teams wherever he lived. Sun Lakes is his first venture into senior softball, and he’s thoroughly enjoying it.

Bill currently owns two classic autos, a 1965 Pontiac GTO and a 1970 Firebird Formula 400; he’s been associated with the Cactus GTO Club for numerous years, serving in several officer positions, including president for eight years. He’s currently co-president of the organization. He says that the members of that group are like an extended family to him, and his softball buddies are becoming the same.

Countless people are fans of old Westerns, but Bill takes it a step further. He researches where various films were made and visits those sights. One of his favorite trips was visiting several locations where Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid was filmed.

Bill’s been in Arizona long enough to be a fan of the D-backs and Cardinals, but also still follows his “hometown teams,” the Minnesota Twins and Vikings.

He does have one other interest, a lovely lady named Gail, who lives in Marina del Rey. Bill admits that’s a long way to go for a date but says, “We are making it work!”