|Title:||Student-Athlete; Football, Basketball, Baseball and Contributor to Male Athletics 1954-1990|
Shirley “Slip” Corey, (Class of 1939), Football, Basketball, Baseball,Contributor: Male Athletics 1954-1990
Slip Corey was an outstanding athlete, student and leader at Brewer High School and later played semi-professional baseball. A superb role model for thousands of kids growing up in Brewer, he was also an outstanding coach in the Brewer Little League Baseball program as well as the Brewer Police Athletic Basketball League.
Slip Corey, a 1939 graduate of Brewer High School, was an outstanding three sport athlete playing football, basketball, and baseball. He was selected to be the captain of the football team his senior year where he played right halfback. The 1939 Trident Yearbook indicates “A more able and deserving captain never has nor never will wear the Brewer colors.” The Bangor Daily News described Corey as a finerunner, speedy and shifty, a very good blocker and also a very capable passer. While captain his senior year, it was the only time in Brewer’s long history with arch rival Bangor that the Witches football team beat the Rams twice in the same season, by identical winning scores of 6-0! Corey was also an excellent guard and playmaker in basketball. He earned his letter during his sophomore year which was rare for the era. He was selected as captain of the basketball team in his junior and senior years. The 1937-38 Witches finished the season with a 10-5 record. They qualified for the Bangor Regional tournament where they lost to Dexter in the first round. In 1938-39, he helped to lead the Witches to a record of 15-3 again qualifying for a place in the Bangor Regional Tournament. One of Corey’s great memories of the year was a win over favored Bangor in their second meeting of the season. Corey was also an outstanding baseball player at third base with an occasional yet effective appearance on the pitching mound. During his junior year, the Witches finished with a 16–3 record in 1938 while winning the Bangor Daily News League Championship for the second year in a row. The 1939 baseball team went undefeated during the regular season with a 14-0 record and won the Bangor Daily News League Championship for the third year in a row. Corey had an impressive batting average of .375 his senior year. In the state playoffs, Brewer unfortunately lost to Lewiston in the finals. Slip Corey and his teammates were very proud of the fact that during the 1938-39 year the Witches beat the Rams twice in football, one of two times in basketball and twice in baseball!
Dana Dougherty, his high school coach in all three sports said that he never coached anyone who was more dedicated and who always worked as hard as Slip Corey. Whether the playing field or the classroom, Corey was an outstanding leader at Brewer High School as he was elected Class Vice-President his freshman year and Class President his sophomore, junior and senior years. He also was elected President of the Student Council his senior year. Academically, he was consistently on the honor roll throughout his four years in high school.
Corey, while serving his country during WWII, spent three years as a sergeant in the U.S. Army Engineer Combat Battalion from 1943-1946. After an honorable discharge, he returned to Maine where he then continued his baseball career in the highly competitive Eastern and Tri-county semi-pro leagues. He starred on a 1946 Brewer Jaycees team to win the Northern and Eastern League Championship before an unprecedented 3,000 fans at the Brewer Athletic Field. He also played for the Brewer Easterns in the Tri-County League as they won the league championship in 1947. Once again, in 1949 he helped to lead the Brewer A.A. to the Eastern League Championship.
Slip Corey was one of the founding fathers of the Brewer Little League in 1954. He coached the same team for 36 years. He was awarded the Kenneth C. M. Sills Award in 1960 as the Outstanding Little League Coach in the State of Maine. His teams won 11 league championships and three Brewer Little League All Star State Championships. Slip Corey’s coaching combined the characteristics of irrepressible enthusiasm, devotion to fundamentals and teaching higher values, as well as the rare ability to inspire. Corey’s enduring legacy is his unmatched contribution to Little League Baseball in the City of Brewer and in the State of Maine. Corey and his long time assistant, Bob DeBeck, devoted countless hours of instruction and encouragement to Brewer’s budding baseball players regardless for which team theyp layed. Slip Corey was gentle, wise, patient and more to thousands of aspiring baseball players in Brewer. He also coached youth basketball for 21 years.
On June 25, 1991 the athletic complex at Pendleton St. in Brewer was named in honor of Slip Corey, George Corey, Robert DeBeck and Louis Morelli to honor their many, many years of dedicated service tothe youth of Brewer. This honor has now changed to another athletic complex in the Maple St. area. Slip Corey was inducted into the Maine Baseball Hall of Fame on July 20, 2003. He was also selected to the USA Today sports section as one of the 50 state winners of the Heroes Award.
Slip Corey married his high school sweetheart, Helen Kealiher, in 1940. After working for his father-in-law at Kealiher’s Market for several years, Corey had a 27 year career working at Bangor & Aroostook Railroad holding numerous positions most notably as manager of its Highway Division. The Corey’s had two children, Donna Varney of New Jersey and Dana Corey of Brewer, Maine as well as several grandchildrenand great-grandchildren. Slip and Helen Corey were married for 62 years until Helen’s passing in 2002. Mr. Corey passed away August 4, 2005 at the age of 84.