Insight, News, and Opinion by Nick Abramo
  • November 30, 2021
Hawaii’s 1980 College World Series Team Loses A Special Athlete In Glenn Silva

This story is not an obituary as much as it is a small slice of history to remember Glenn Silva, a great Hawaii athlete who died at age 62 on Oct. 26.

Silva pitched for the University of Hawaii baseball team that made it deep into the 1980 College World Series in Omaha, Neb. The news of his death came to Bedrock Sports Hawaii via Gordon Muramaru, an infielder on the Rainbows squad that lost to Arizona 5-3 in that 1980 national championship finale.

“True stud back in the day,” Muramaru texted about Silva. “Hawaii’s baseball community will be sad.”

In high school, Silva pitched and played quarterback for Castle, where he was a teammate of Sam Kakazu, another Hawaii pitcher during that historic CWS season.

Former UH pitcher Glenn Silva.

“It’s a tough loss,” Kakazu said in a Thursday phone interview about losing his friend and former teammate. “My history with him goes back to seventh and eighth grade. (At Castle), he teamed up with Carlos Diaz (eventually a pitcher for Atlanta Braves, New York Mets and Los Angeles Dodgers) and they didn’t give up an earned run throughout the whole regular season.”

Silva, according to Kakazu, was one of the only full scholarship players under coach Les Murakami back then.

“And even though Glenn hurt his shoulder (and didn’t pitch as much as he could have), coach Les honored his scholarship all four years,” Kakazu said.

Kakazu remembers Silva as having a “wicked curveball.”

“And he was the nicest of guys,” Kakazu added. “When we were already at the University, we were asked to do a clinic at Kailua, our rivals. They ended up feeding the kids, but they didn’t feed us. I was starving and we went to Burger King. I ordered half the menu and look in my wallet and I don’t have enough money. I look over at Glenn. He takes out a $20 and gives it to me. Later on, I’m sitting down and talking too much and I notice that all he ordered was French fries. I asked, ‘Did I take all of your money.’ He said, ‘Yeah.’ I was like, ‘Why didn’t you tell me?’ And then I told him that if it was the other way. around, I would have told him, ‘Good luck, brother.’ ”

Click here for Glenn Silva’s obituary from usobit.com.

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ALSO AT BedrockSportsHawaii.com: The Agony Of Defeat In Human Form: Kamehameha’s Hunter Kaulana Ah Loo
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