By: Raymond Rolak
If you grew in Redford and you were active in sports you were probably touched by this man, William Kandilian. He was affectionately known as “Big Bill.” Big Bill passed away recently at the age of 92. He started Big Bill’s Trophies, which became an institution in Dearborn Heights and Redford Township. Every kid in Redford Township had at least one trophy from Big Bill’s that would end up on the mantle for the entire family to admire.
Bill was one of a kind. In the early ’70s, he sponsored high-powered baseball teams in the old Hearst – Free Press – Adray baseball leagues. His 1967 team, coached by Babe Beauchamp and Jerry Morrisey had a very interesting anecdote regarding northwest Detroit baseball history. His hockey teams also played an important part of his life too.
Longtime Detroit sports figure, MorrisMoorawnick, a celebrated statistician and professional scorekeeper was a was a shining example of someone who added flavor to Big Bill’s history. Morry was a bachelor semi-savant living in the Ever-7 and West-7 neighborhoods. Morrywas the official scorekeeper for the Detroit RedWings and the Detroit Piston games as well as Wayne State basketball and the University of Michigan baseball teams. He would also go to all the Detroit Tiger games and was known all over the country.
Morry would rent out rooms in his home to elite baseballprospects who wanted the great competition by playing in Detroit. The only caveat was that they had to drive Morry to the games.
Lost to history is that one of Big Bill’s premier players was major league Hall of Famer, Steve Garvey, who was also one of Morry’s tenants. During that memorable season Garvey established himself as a freshman football and baseball player at Michigan State University. He then went on to an illustrious career as an all-star first baseman for the Los Angeles and San Diego Padres.
Big Bill is survived by his son, “Little Bill,” who carries on his legacy at Little Bill’s Trophies located on W. Six Mile Rd. right here in Redford.
In Loving Memory of
October 2, 1927 – March 9, 2020
The Golfer’s Prayer
The Lord is my golf-cart:
I shall not walk.
He maketh my drives to lie down on the green:
He leadth me beside the water hazard.
He restoreth my divots: He leadeth me in the
paths of the fairway for His name’s sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the
shadow of Pebble Beach. I will fear no dogleg:
for thou art with me: thy wedge and thy niblick,
they comfort me.
Thou preparest a tee for me in the
presence of the Masters:
thou anointest my hands with rosin:
my putt runneth over to the cup:
and dwells there.
Surely low green fees shall follow
me all the days of my life: and I will
dwell in the clubhouse of the Lord forever.