David Fredrick “Dave” Mann, age 85, of Seattle, Washington and formerly of Dalton, Georgia, passed away on Monday, May 14, 2018 in the Kline Galland Nursing Home in Seattle.
He was born on Feb. 16, 1933 to the late Solomon Mann, Sr. and Mary Phillips Mann. Preceding him in death were his sisters and brothers, Marzelle Ray, John “Snook” Mann, William “Bill” Mann, Solomon Mann Jr., Addie Lee Baker Kerr, Marionee McCormick, Ruby Suttle, Emanuel North, and Bessie Whitener.
David attended New Hope Baptist Church and Emery Street School in Dalton through the eighth grade, then moved to Detroit, Mi. to live with his older brother, John “Snook” Mann, where he graduated from Miller High School. He attended college at Wayne State University in Detroit.
In 1953, David held the honor of being the first athlete of color to sign a professional baseball contract from the state of Michigan. Including in this milestone was the historic fact that two Black Daltonians, Harry “Suitcase” Simpson and David Mann, were the first athletes from Dalton to play professional baseball. David played professional baseball for 13 years with the St. Louis Browns, Brooklyn Dodgers, Boston Red Sox and Cleveland Indians organizations. David held the distinction of playing with and being the roommate of the legendary Satchel Paige when they played for the Miami Marlins of the International League in 1960. In 1962, David, along with Hall of Fame recipient Carl Yastrimski and Earl Wilson, came west from the Minneapolis Millers, a triple A club of the Boston Red Sox Organization, to play for the Seattle Rainiers. David played with the Rainiers for three years before retiring in 1965. He made Seattle his home and served as the sports editor of The Facts Newspaper. Although David called Seattle home, he would make frequent trips back to Dalton until declining health restricted him from traveling.
He is lovingly survived by his sister, Kathleen DeLoach of Dalton; two sisters-in-law, Frances Mann of New York, N.Y. and Ruth North of Fayetteville, N.C.; and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, other relatives, and friends.
His remains are at Evergreen-Washelli Funeral Home, 11111 Aurora Avenue North, Seattle, WA 98133.
A memorial service will be held in Seattle on May 30. The memorial service in Dalton will be announced at a later date.
This announcement is a courtesy of Willis Funeral Home, Dalton.