"Now along comes John Bacchia to enlighten us about Augie Donatelli and

enrich us with stories of a man who was a World War II hero involved in

eighteen missions as a B-17 tail gunner, spent fifteen months as a German

prisoner-of-war where he began umpiring softball games, fled the Pennsylvania

coal mines to pursue a career as an umpire, was promoted in

his new career by no less a legendary figure than Branch Rickey, was behind

the plate for four no-hitters and such historic games as Stan Musial's 3000th

hit and Willie Mays's four home runs against the Milwaukee Braves, and was

at the forefront and instrumental in the creation of the first umpires' union,

the Major League Umpires Association, in 1964."

                                 - Phil Pepe, author of 50 books on baseball, including

                                            The Wit and Wisdom of Yogi Berra



John Bacchia is a writer/ producer and a two time winner of the National Sports Emmy Award.  He has contributed to scores of sports programs and documentaries as a writer/producer and also as a video editor.  The book about Augie is based on hours of original interviews  conducted with Donatelli in the 1980s.


Augie Donatelli inducted into a Pennsylvania Military Hall of Fame  in 2015

John Bacchia

© Original artwork by Patrick Donatelli.