Memorial ceremony for beloved late youth sports coach planned for June 3 at Pine Banks Park
Tom Heerter Sr. was one of a kind. Like they say around Malden, he was “a real character,” and in these parts that is a bigtime compliment. It means he had ways about him that were unique – in a good way – and when talking about Tom Heerter, there is a whole bunch of good to talk about.
As Pine Banks Superintendent Kevin Benner, who was coached by Heerter in multiple sports and then coached alongside him, says, “Tom was like the Father Flanagan of Malden sports. He loved ALL the kids and never thought there was a bad kid anywhere, only another one that needed to be helped.”
The worst thing that Tom Heerter would ever say was that a kid was “a little fresh sometimes,” to coin a phrase… and then he’d find a way to help that kid get back on the right track.
He was man of all seasons, literally, as he would coach football, basketball and Little League and Babe Ruth baseball, sometimes multiple sports and teams in multiple seasons. That was Tom. He would coach any kid, any time. It would always be a labor of love. Hundreds if not thousands of kids benefitted from Tom’s guidance and nurturing.
When he passed suddenly in 2015, taking ill during a practice on a Malden field, of course, a huge void was left in the Malden community.
Benner has taken the mantle of organizing a memorial event for Tom Heerter Sr., on Saturday, June 3, at Pine Banks Park (1087 Main St., Malden) at 11:00 a.m. A memorial stone will be laid and other remembrances will be held. A free cookout on the park premises will follow. Tom’s family, extended family and all who loved him are invited or are welcome. Spread the word!
Donations to help defray the cost of the event are encouraged online at