A group accustomed to applauding men in uniform did that again when it invited three Soldiers from the Natick Soldier Systems Center to lunch just before Veterans Day.

As part of its "Hot Stove Luncheon" on Nov. 10 at the Boston Marriott in Newton, Mass., the BoSox Club - the official fan organization of the Boston Red Sox - recognized CW3 Michael Doe, Sgt. Christopher Sanchez and Spc. Matthew Dickson of the NSSC. The three men entered the Marriott grand ballroom to a standing ovation.

"We're honored to have you here today," said BoSox Club President Joel Leonard after the NSSC Soldiers reached their table. "Thank you so much."

Like the club membership, Doe, Sanchez and Dickson had generous helpings of baseball for dessert. They watched "Mr. Red Sox," 91-year-old Johnny Pesky, receive an award and then listened as Baseball Hall of Fame journalist Peter Gammons and New England Sports Network's Tom Caron chatted about the pennant-winning 1975 Red Sox.

"They came up with so many really good players," Gammons recalled. "Of course, it turned out to be a great team. There were a lot of great moments in that season."

Former Red Sox pitcher Bill Monboquette also spoke, sharing memories of his 1962 no-hitter against the Chicago White Sox.

Amiel Sawdaye, Red Sox director of amateur scouting, followed with an assessment of young talent in the organization.

"It's been a fun experience for the last 10 years to watch the draft evolve," Sawdaye said.

Larry Lucchino, president and chief executive officer of the Red Sox, praised the BoSox Club members.

"You help carry the flame of the past into the present and the future," Lucchino said. "We thank you for all that you do, both preserving our past, being active in our charitable activities and for generally supporting this team with your heart and soul."

Taking it all in at Table 14 were Doe of Integrated Logistics Support Center, Sanchez of Headquarters Research and Development Detachment, and Dickson of U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine.

"It's overwhelming and, wow, I'm speechless," Doe said. "I've never participated in an event like this, so it was unique, and I appreciated how people treated us and how we were received.

"I guess people really appreciate it, and they expressed that to us. It was a good feeling."

Sanchez said he had a great time.

"I just met a lot of really great people who appreciated us for what we do," said Sanchez, "and I think we showed the same thing for what they do, because they're the ones that support this great organization - the Boston Red Sox."

"It was an honor to be here," said Dickson, "that they even asked us to come."

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16