Pat Penafeather

Thanks to a reader who knew young Mr. Penafeather, Astroland now knows a bit more about Pat Penafeather. Earlier versions of this page had merely suspected something tragic. As with Jay Dahl, we'll never be quite sure what contributions Mr. Penafeather might have made to the Astros organization.

Looks like he certainly had plans.

". . .[H]e loved the Astros, really anything baseball. He started working for the Auburn Astros when he was 11 years old--nothing made him happier than to be at the ball field. We even had our Senior Prom on one of their opening nights and he wanted to take me to the ball park before going to the dance (his parents wouldn't let him) and then every time I went to the bathroom, he was checking to see how they were doing at the game. He went to Niagara University and loved it, vowed never to return to live in Auburn again. He hoped to live in Houston.

He died in the 2nd semester (Feb 16, 1989), he wasn't quite 19. His birthday was in September. He died from spinal menigitis. I talked to him until almost mid-night on the 15th as he was apologizing my valentine present would be late and by 4am on the 16th, he was dead. He never even knew he was sick. My valentine arrived on the 17th. Many of the Houston Astros attended the funeral including their coach. They buried an autographed baseball with him. The Auburn Astros paid tribute and it was all beautiful. This past February [2008] he has been dead longer than he was alive.


The back of his
1988 ProCards Auburn Astros # 1952:
Pat is a 1988 graduate of Auburn High School. He started with the team when he was only 11. Pat will attend Niagara University in the Fall of 1988. He is regarded as one of the outstanding groundskeepers in the NY-Penn League. His biggest thrill was being hired to work for the Astros.
 In 1990, the Auburn Astros Booster club inititated a Person of the Year award that was named after Penafeather. Though the Booster Club still existed when the Astros left Auburn after the 2000 season, it is unclear whether the award was still extant at that time.

Thanks to Darla.