Eddie Heppt ’75, was a two sport varsity athlete at McClancy. Eddie played basketball for the Freshman & JV teams, but it was on the diamond where he excelled above all others. While a freshman, Eddie pitched the McClancy Junior Varsity squad to the City Championship game. Later, Eddie combined with fellow McClancy Hall of Famer, Don Cooper to form a formidable 1-2 pitching combo, and they led the Crusaders to back to back city finals in 1974 and 1975. Eddie’s strengths did not end with his pitching, in one game against Mater Christi, he slugged two home runs and drove in five runs. With his gifted lefty pitching arm and his smooth, powerful batting stroke, Eddie was named Honorable mention on the Long IslandPress’ and Tablet’s All-Star teams as a junior in1974. A year later he was selected to the Tablet and the N.Y. Daily News High School All Star Teams and the Greater New York Sandlot Alliance All-Star Team At the New York Sandlot Alliance game, he played at Shea Stadium with the city’s greatest high school players including future major leaguer player and manager, Lee Mazzilli). The recognition kept on coming and so did the scouts … at almost every game Eddie pitched. Besides being heavily scouted by the Cincinnati Reds, San Francisco Giants, NY Yankees and the Detroit Tigers, Eddie drew the attention of the Lamar University baseball coach, Jim Gilligan. Lamar University was a nationally ranked, powerhouse baseball program in the Southland Conference. Gilligan was, and remains, an astute judge of baseball talent. He is the 16th winningest coach in NCAA college baseball history, and has graduated 130 players into the professional ranks. With the lure of an opportunity to play baseball year round in sunny Texas, and the chance to compete against the likes of the University of Texas, Baylor, Rice, Texas A&M, Southern Alabama, Southern Mississippi and other high profile baseball programs, and to the dismay of many scouts, Eddie announced that he would be attending Lamar University and majoring in Criminal Justice. After two seasons at Lamar, Eddie returned home to NY to pursue the other loves of his life: His Lori, and his dream of becoming a NYC Police Officer. He achieved both of these important objectives; marrying Lori in 1979 and entering the NYC Police Academy in 1982. Eddie graduated from the Academy and was assigned to the 25th Precinct in Spanish Harlem. Although this was a community with a high violent crime rate, low per capita income, and difficult and dangerous working conditions, Eddie never considered transferring to another assignment. He derived great personal satisfaction in helping those less fortunate than himself, and this was where he was needed the most. Of course Eddie was quickly recruited by the NYPD baseball league where he played in many winning games.
Lori and Eddie had two children, Stacey and Daniel. Unfortunately Daniel never knew his dad because Eddie passed away due to an undiagnosed heart condition two months before his son was born … but the legacy lives on in all of our hearts.