• Saturday, March 17th, 2018


For 40-plus years, Wayne Rust positioned himself behind many a home plate and shared ballfields with countless players while umpiring over 35,000 games prior to passing away in 2007. Wayne worked as an ASA umpire for Queen City Umpire Association for twelve years prior to joining the Buckeye Umpire Association at Expressway Park. There Wayne officiated over 300 USSSA National Invitational Tournaments, 225 USSSA State Championships, 25 USSSA National Tournaments, six USSSA World Tournaments, and a USSSA Men’s Major World Series in 1996. Long time friend Bob Owens, Park Manager at Expressway Park where Wayne worked the lion’s share of his games, said Wayne relished working any game at any level, whether it be a league game or tournament game. Wayne never missed an umpire assignment, Owens added, and no one was ever a greater ambassador for the game. Owens also praised Rust for being a mentor, teacher and father figure to Expressway Park’s umpires, and for his unmatched knowledge of the playing rules. He attended twenty USSSA Divisional Umpire Clinics, and fifteen USSSA National Clinics. He served as Umpire-In-Chief for over 100 USSSA State Championships, over 300 National Invitationals, twelve USSSA National Championships, and four World Tournaments. Locally, Rust received 17 Buckeye Umpire Service Awards from 1982-2007, was named Buckeye Umpire Association “Umpire of the Year” six times, and was selected Greater Cincinnati USSSA “Umpire of the Year” twice. He was honored as the “Ohio USSSA State Umpire of the Year” in 1996, and in 2002 was presented the USSSA “National Director of Officials Award” – USSSA’s highest umpire award except for induction into the National Hall of Fame. Rust was also an accomplished player, competing with nationally ranked teams like Greater Cincinnati Sports and Bushelman Construction. He was named to nine All-City teams and won four ASA Metro titles and four ASA Regional crowns. Wayne was also a longtime Ohio High School basketball and football official, and is a member of the New Richmond High School basketball and baseball Hall of Fame. would work any game at any level whether it be a league game or tournament game. Wayne never missed an umpire assignment Owens said. Russ was also selected as umpire of the year multiple teams by mulitple slowpitch associations including USSSA National Director of Officials Award in 2002, one of USSSA’s highest umpire awards..

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