September 24, 1947 ~ December 21, 2019

Born in: San Francisco, California
Resided in: Aurora, Colorado

Norman Angelini, 72, of Aurora, Colorado, passed away December 21, 2019. He was born September 24, 1947 in San Francisco, California.

The void Norm leaves will be filled with memories which will always remain. These memories will leave indelible marks on our souls which we will never forget.

Norm was an outstanding father, grandfather, brother and husband who was beloved by everyone (except umpires). There are no words to express our pain but want to celebrate an outstanding life of a well-loved man. Professional baseball player (Kansas City Royals & Atlanta Braves), college graduate Washington St, inducted into the college of San Mateo CA hall of fame where he still holds numerous records, Serra Highschool San Mateo, CA Hall of Fame, avid golfer, old time movie watcher, coach and most importantly just an exceptional human being.

Norm is survived by his beloved wife, Sue; son, Michael (Aubrey); grandsons, Soren & Connor; brother Joe (Ellen); and numerous nieces & nephews.

A Celebration of Norm’s life will be held at 2:00pm, on Saturday, January 4, 2020, in the Horan & McConaty Family Chapel, 11150 E. Dartmouth Ave., Aurora, CO  80014.

There will be a gathering immediately following the service at Maggiano’s Denver Tech Center, 7401 South Clinton Street, Englewood, CO 80112.


Celebration of Life: January 4, 2020 2:00 pm

Horan & McConaty - SE Denver/Aurora
11150 E. Dartmouth Ave.
Aurora, CO 80014

Room: Chapel


Maggiano's Denver Tech Center
7401 South Clinton Street
Englewood, Colorado 80112

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Memories Timeline


    • Good afternoon, everyone.

      We are gathered here today to celebrate the life of Norman Stanley Angelini. For anyone who does not know me, my name is Rick Angelini and Norm was my uncle. I am the son to his younger brother Joe. Thank you to all who have made it out for the occasion, knowing that hearts are heavy at this time.

      It is certainly with mixed emotions that we are here today, and for me also, in front of you speaking now. Of course, we must deal with the sadness of losing someone so special in each of our lives and realize that Norm’s life has come to an end. However, at the same time, we are brought together today to celebrate the man that we all have in common, and how he has affected our lives as individuals. His spirit touched each of us separately, though I am confident, in a positive way. I am very honored to be standing here to speak about my uncle Norm today because he was a very special person in my life. Like many others, he gave me inspiration, motivation, made me laugh and smile, and was a person I looked up to and revered.

      It has been said that the best speeches are short speeches… Those people must not have had much to say, and they certainly weren’t about to talk about a guy like Norm. When I was asked if I could lead this tribute, in saying a few words, my first thought was, “No, I cannot; a few words were not going to get it done.” If I am going to do this, in honoring Norm, I am going to need some time. My first draft, when I wrote this and then read it, was 34 minutes. Please believe me that I did what I could to trim it down to 20. How can I possibly eulogize this great man in less? If I do this right, you will laugh and you will cry, as I will laugh and cry, in remembering him, and it will feel like 10. If at the end, you don’t like it, don’t ask me to write your eulogy. And frankly, if you don’t think this guy is worth memorializing for 20 minutes, you can hit the showers right now.

      Norm was born on September 24th, 1947 in San Francisco and grew up just 15 miles south in a small costal town, Half Moon Bay; a town, at the time, with a population of only 2,000 people. In the 40’s, Half Moon Bay was known mostly for its agriculture, fishing, and immigrant community. It was a very humble upbringing, being raised by his parents, Tulio and Florence Angelini, who lived through 2 world wars, an economic depression, and the Korean War, which Tulio proudly fought in. Their eldest child, Norm, was the older brother and lifelong-hero to his younger brothers Ronnie and Joey. Early in life, the game of baseball started to inspire and follow Norm as he played on Half Moon Bay’s first ever Little League Baseball team. He was good. Baseball would be a theme throughout Norm’s life, as he not only realized many of his personal and professional goals, but also used the game to connect with and touch others.

      With basic educations, though MBAs in street smarts, Norm’s father and grandfather opened a small mercantile store in Half Moon Bay, which Norm worked in while he was growing up. His father, hardened from his own upbringing, instilled work ethic, the value of a dollar, and putting family first. Although Norm excelled at baseball from an early age, his father thought it more important to focus on his job in the store rather than throwing a ball around a field. It was his grandfather, Pappy, Norm told me, that encouraged him to play ball; Pappy taught him that he only had one life to live, one time to be a kid, and to go have some fun. Pappy would cover for him in the shop as he would tell Norm to get to the field to practice. I never had the chance to meet Pappy, though I received the same message from him through Norm and my father.

      Norm went to Serra High School in San Mateo, and then the College of San Mateo, before attending Washington State University. Through his schooling, he would further develop his passion for throwing a baseball hard, very curvy, getting batters out, a competitive edge, and the love of winning. Norm was a standout; he was a star athlete and his name can still be found throughout the record books of the schools he attended. He has been inducted into the College of San Mateo Hall of Fame along with notable names such as football legends Bill Walsh, Dick Vermeil, John Madden; Olympians such as Archie Williams, Nicole Carroll-Lewis, and John Noce, who was also his baseball coach at CSM; and baseball legends such as Jon Miller, Keith Hernandez, and Bob McClure. Norm was also inducted into the Serra High School Hall of Fame including notable names such as Lynn Swann, Barry Bonds, Tom Brady, and Jim Fregosi. Norm was before them all. Since Norm attended Serra High School, 39 other athletes have made it to go on to play Major League Baseball. He started a trend.

      Norm found that his athletic abilities would allow him to live out his dreams, ultimately reaching the grand stage of many little boy’s dreams, Major League Baseball. It is an incredible feat to make it to the level of being a professional baseball player. Since the beginning of the sport in 1871, 149 years ago, less than 20,000 people have had the opportunity to wear a Major League Baseball jersey. The university of Colorado-Boulder currently employs 13,300 employees right now as I speak. The level of his profession that he reached is an incredible accomplishment.

      On July 22, 1972, after playing 4 years of minor league baseball, Norm made his major league debut for the Kansas City Royals against the Baltimore Orioles at Municipal Stadium. It was a night game played on grass with just over 16,000 in attendance. After Brooks Robinson reached base, Norm entered the game in relief; it was the top of the 7th inning with one runner on and two out, and the Royals trailing the Orioles 3-2. From the stretch, to the first batter he faced, Norm gave up a 2-run homerun, hit to R/CF, to former AL MVP Boog Powell. Norm sure knew how to make an entrance…. The Royals were now trailing 5-2. Norm, determined, dug in and settled down. He would strike out Davey Johnson to end the top of the inning. The Royals would score 2 in the bottom of the 7th to bring the game closer, Baltimore 5-Kansas City 4. Norm came back in the top of the 8th and walked the lead-off batter, on a pitch that I am sure Norm would tell us was a strike and the umpire made a terrible call. He got the next batter, Chico Salmon, to ground into a double play and then retired Merv Rettenmund to end the inning unscathed, 3 up, 3 down. The Royals scored 4 in the bottom of the eighth to go ahead 8-5, and the game was saved by the Royals closer, Ken Wright. When all was said and done, Norm struck out one, walked one, gave up one earned run on one hit, and recorded the win to start his career 1-0. The home run which he gave up, to the first batter he faced, would be the only home run he would ever give up in his career. It should be noted that the next time Norm faced Boog Powell, Norm struck him out. Later in his career, he would also strike out MLB Hall of Famers, MVPs, and All-Stars such as Rod Carew, Carl Yastrzemski, and Bobby Murcer, among others.

      While Norm’s career was short, his numbers were outstanding. As a mid-relief pitcher, in a day and age in baseball before mid-relief pitchers were known how to be used as they are today, Norm was ahead of his time. He had a 66% winning percentage, ERA under 3.00, had a 1:1 strikeout per inning ratio, and gave up just the 1 home run against 89 batters faced. Regardless, to those that know the game well, these numbers are truly outstanding. If Norm were playing today, he would be sought after as a specialty left-handed pitcher on every MLB roster. Again, he was ahead of his time and the game had yet to understand and value his abilities.

      He would become the pride of his town, the pride of his friends, the pride of his siblings, and his relatives that would follow, along with the pride of his parents. His father, who at one time didn’t understand the value of throwing a ball around the field, tried to showcase Norm’s accomplishments to the world the with an 8-foot high, 5-foot wide trophy case, containing every trophy, newspaper clipping, and baseball card of Norm’s, at the entryway of his office. His father, Tulio, might have been the proudest of all of us.

      It was through baseball that Norm would shape his life as a sportsman, a competitor, and a life-long teammate. Norm learned to battle and compete, have fun, and win gracefully. One day, if we are all lucky, maybe, Norm just might learn how to lose gracefully.
      Norm met some of his best friends through baseball, and he never let them go through the rest of his life. Through baseball, he started to develop some of his best memories, though it was only the beginning, as he had so many more memories and friendships to make.
      During his playing days, Norm marked a personal milestone in meeting a person he would bond with for the rest of his life and ultimately marry, as his future life-partner, life-teammate, and life-competitor, Sue. Fittingly, they met at a game as she sat close to the bullpen one fateful day. I will not elaborate on her likeness to Susan Sarandon in Bull Durham. Sue complimented Norm well because when push came to shove, she could be Norm’s equal, his counterbalance, and given enough time, could level him out. Norm finished his professional baseball career in Denver, and it was in Colorado that Norm and Sue decided to start the rest of their lives. They would ultimately be married for almost 50 years.
      Their love for each other led to the next mile marker as they had their son, Michael. Like all of us with children, from the beginning, Mike was the center of their world. As passionate as Norm was on the field, or about anything he loved, it paled in comparison to the love he had for his son. This was evident from the way he spoke about Mike and admired Mike’s own abilities and accomplishments from childhood through adulthood. Norm’s unconditional love toward Mike was also evident in the fact that nobody can get so frustrated and furious at times with someone they don’t love with all of their heart. It isn’t as though Mike got delivered on a rainbow-covered cloud with angel wings already attached… Raising Mike to his adulthood, the age of 40, might be Norm’s greatest accomplishment. In fact, sometimes Sue and Norm’s love for Mike would inspire their own competition between each other… “You deal with him. No, you deal with him. NO, YOU DEAL WITH HIM!”. For those of you that know Mike, we should all be grateful Norm made it to 50, let alone 72.

      Sue and Mike were the center of Norm’s world until two very special people came to be, his grandsons, Soren and Conner. As Norm was getting up in age, Soren and Conner became Norm’s conduit to be young again. Soren and Conner gave him a reason to get out on the field again, to put on a glove again, to teach again, and to have teammates again. Soren and Conner made Norm’s eyes light up any time he talked about them. He was especially impressed with Soren’s brut and brawn, leadership, and confidence; and with Conner’s charm, wit and intelligence, and any time he could outsmart Soren. As proud as he was for his accomplishments as a ballplayer, husband, father, and great friend, he cherished being a grandfather to these two boys, that he loved very much, as much as anything else. Soren, Conner, I know you already realize how lucky you are for the grandfather you had, though you also need to understand that he is still with you through your memories and through the lifetime of connections you have as a result of everyone your grandfather touched. We are all with you like he was.

      Norm, to many, old and young, was a teacher, coach, mentor, friend, and an inspiration. His presence and willingness to give simply allowed so many others to receive everything he had to offer. His spirit continued to touch countless others, many times, with baseball as the medium.

      Norm was a special and unique man and he had some very specific characteristics that made him who he was.

      Norm was a relatively simple man:

      Give him some sports to watch or a round of golf to play, a Dewar’s White label and/or a Bud Light, or two, or three, or four…., some salami and warm Sourdough Bread, be surrounded by family and friends, and he was happy.

      While easy to please, Norm had a short fuse and sat on a LARGE powder keg. His temperament was easily challenged, and when it was, the result was almost always very, very, funny. For anyone in the room who has known Norm at all, you have a story when he lost his temper at some point in time, and something became a projectile.

      I learned this first as a caddie for my Uncle Norm and my dad at about the age of 6, when I would join them on the golf course and need to chase errant golf clubs that were thrown wide of the fairway, after errant shots which were wide of the green, sometimes thrown backwards, in the direction from which we came. One life lesson that I learned from Norm was that if you are going to throw a club, once I was old enough to stop chasing his, was to throw the club in the direction you are going.
      I also heard that, at times, he got mad at umpires…allegedly. In those stories, he may or may not have gotten thrown out of a baseball game once or twice…allegedly. I never actually saw it happen, so I cannot confirm if this is true.

      While Norm’s short fuse could lead to a fit of temper at times, there was another fuse, also quick to be lit, that would lead to an eruption of laughter. Norm was almost always laughing, smiling, and always made others laugh and smile as a result. His humor was witty, intelligent, and nuanced, though also easy to understand and to be around.

      Norm could find humor in anything. He could take something so mundane and make a joke of it. He would make others around him laugh, or make Sue roll her eyes and shake her head, a sure sign whatever he said was indeed funny.
      Norm would recount any experience, even something that once pissed him off or frustrated at the time, and be laughing about it 20 minutes later or 20 years later equally.

      Norm was a competitor in his core:

      Norm loved to complete, despised losing, and would try anything to win. He wouldn’t cheat or steal, though he would take every advantage he could to win. However this trait got passed down to me, maybe through my dad, Norm, thank you with all of me.
      As competitive as Norm was personally, he was just as competitive and encouraging for anyone he loved. He wanted the people he loved to win, whatever their battle might be, and he would do anything he could to support their cause.
      Even as Norm became weaker in his health, he refused to quit fighting; he refused to give up.

      Norm loved to be around family and friends.

      This seemed to be all the time, because he always wanted to be with his family or friends, and when he wasn’t, he could be friendly with anyone.
      Norm made friends easily because he was real, he was genuine, he was sincere, and told it how he thought it was. What you saw was what he was and what you got. While stubborn, perhaps, like all of us can be at times, he was open minded and was always willing to listen to what another had to say.
      In speaking with his baseball buddies, those he met when he was a kid in his early 20’s, they remember him as always being loyal and loving and that he treated everyone with kindness and respect. Frank LaCorte recalls Norm being proud of his Italian heritage; that he loved his family and would boast about them often. Regardless of the distance their respective lives took them, whenever they would meet up, they wouldn’t miss a beat and it was though they had only seen each other the day before.
      Norm was a hero to many of the players he played with in the minor leagues because he was one of the few that had made it to the grand stage. The other players, grown men, looked up to Norm the same way I did as a child, along with countless other children. Some even credit Norm with their own opportunity to make it to the big leagues. One of his baseball buddies and lifelong friends, Al Autry, was one of these teammates. None of the catchers were willing to work a bullpen session with Al, so Norm would catch for him wearing a fielder’s glove, making sure that Al got his reps in.
      Norm didn’t care if you were a minor leaguer, major leaguer, the owner of the club or were a part of the field maintenance crew… He treated everybody the same. He gave the respect he was given and greeted you with a handshake and a smile.

      Everybody liked to be around Norm:

      The party or event could not start until Norm arrived. Something was always missing if everyone knew he was coming, though he wasn’t there yet. Once he got there, everything was right.
      People wanted to be in the same circle as Norm. They wanted to feel his charisma, they wanted to hear his laugh.
      Anytime Norm was coming to visit, back home in Half Moon Bay, it was an occasion. There could be no plans, except that Norm was on his way, and it was looked forward to with excitement. We always knew he was excited to be with us also because we were always greeted with a hug and a smile. I knew it was genuine because he always cried when he left.

      Norm was a phenomenal story teller:

      Norm had a thousand stories, from a thousand experiences; it is important to note that he did not have two thousand stories from one thousand experiences. Norm didn’t need to BS or blow smoke to impress someone. His stories were his own and they were genuine because he lived them. The reason his stories and memories were great is because he was always in the middle of them, and his presence in the story always made it better because he would paint a picture we could see, and he was in the center of it!
      As great of a storyteller that Norm was, he was also a great “story listener”. When anyone told a story or recalled a memory to him, he was always very engaged, intrigued, and would think that your story was the most incredible and funny story he had ever heard. When all you wanted to be was in his circle, he could make you feel like you were the only person in the room.

      People like to say they knew Norm; he left a great impression everywhere he went:

      Growing up in the same small town as Norm, I got reminded by people often of the impact he had on them, and it is always a positive memory.
      I played against Serra High School, on the field he played, warmed up in the batting cage that his name graces, along with all the other Alumni that made it to the big leagues. When I would arrive at the field, people would whisper that I was related to Norm.
      I played at the College of San Mateo, on the same field as Norm, and I would be told by the great coach John Noce, winningest collegiate baseball coach in the history of California, that Norm had the greatest left-handed curveball he had ever seen and has ever seen since.
      To this day, when I introduce myself to people I meet back home, when they hear my last name, sometimes, I still get asked if I know Norm. When I say yes, they are excited, and they always have a great story to tell of their own about him.

      To me personally, growing up, Norm was a mythical person that I actually had the opportunity to know. For me, it was like knowing Mickey Mantle. I felt so lucky. He was the MLB ball player who was my guy. The guy that used to wear the uniform on the field and take the ball. The guy that struck out Yaz. The guy that played in Fenway and Yankee stadium. Growing up, I wanted the same. For any child that got to know Norm, he passed along the same magic that sport has to offer and the belief that anything is possible. He inspired me to think that I might be able to accomplish a similar, great feat, should fate be in my favor.

      Now that I am a bit older, and have experienced a bit of life, of course I still feel so lucky that I have had the opportunity to have known him, though I began to see him less as the accomplished athlete and see him more as the accomplished man. He is the guy that was married to his wife for 47+ years; the guy that helped build a wonderful family; the guy who was a great son and was seen as a hero to his siblings, the guy that was a teacher, coach, mentor, friend, and inspiration to others. He is they guy that everyone wanted to be around and who made others laugh and smile. He is they guy that got to run around with his son and then his grandkids that adored him. He is still the guy I want to be. I am still inspired to think that I might be able to accomplish similar great feats, should fate be in my favor.

      Baseball followed Norm everywhere he went though it is only a small portion of what made him who he was as a person. Frankly, Norm did not realize the success he wanted on the field and didn’t make it all that long in his chosen profession. As a major leaguer, he only played a couple of years and didn’t have a huge impact on the game. He had zero All-Star appearances and zero MVP awards. However, he had so many greater successes: as a husband, he was an MVP; father – MVP; grandfather – MVP; son – MVP; brother – MVP; uncle – MVP; friend – MVP; coach – MVP; mentor – MVP; inspiration to others – MVP.

      That is ten MVPs and that should put him into anybody’s Hall of Fame; he is certainly in mine.

      Norm is survived by hundreds of people his spirit impacted over his lifetime while he was with us, and his memory will live through us for the person he was and the way he has inspired us to be and how we may want to live our lives. Like all of the great ones, the mold was broken after he was made, there will only ever be one of him, and we are lucky to have had him in our lives.

      I am far from an expert on life; I am still just learning about it myself. Though, if I could take a couple of cues from Norm, I would suggest keeping yourself surrounded by the people you love. Be friends with people that you want to keep for a lifetime. Laugh with life, even when times are tough. And always, throw your golf clubs forward, so you can pick them up on your way to your next great shot.

      Norm, I love you Babe! You inspired me when I was 4, and you still inspire me now that I am 40. Thank you for everything you were in my life and the lives of everyone else you touched.

  1. Sue you have our sympathy. Norm was a joy to visit with, and I was glad to count him (and you) as friends and former neighbors, as well as dear clients.
    You are in our prayers.

  2. Norm was a inspiration to the boys and their teams know he will be missed by all. Left this life way too soon Praying 🙏 for the family during this very difficult time.

  3. Our Buddie Norm, we will miss you so much! Loved sitting with you and Sue at all our baseball games, talk about laughing and just enjoying our day! We will remember you forever! RIP, God Bless you. Fly with the Angels Norm! I will remember you saying “How you doin” Love you Norm. Love Ed and Dianna Cortez






  5. Great Father and Grandfather, to his boys. Great with all the boys he coached and helped on the ballfields. Norm was a great guy and will be truly missed by anyone that got to know him.

  6. Over 40+ years of us traveling together or just hanging out
    in town created so many wonderful memories of fun and laughter.
    These we will keep in our hearts forever. Rest in Peace Norm.

  7. We were lucky to have Norm as our next-door-neighbor for 18 years. Sue, Norm, and their dog Smoky welcomed us to the neighborhood in 2012. Norm had a great personality, and an infectious laugh! We would meet in the front yard to visit and laugh — and then talk and laugh some more. It was Norm who rescued me from my roof, after I had stubbornly climbed up after knee surgery. Rest in peace, Norm! You will be missed!

  8. I had the honor and pleasure of “watching” at first base as Norm threw back to back perfect games in the San Mateo Summer League, back in the Serra days. I remember the SF Sporting Green covering his accomplishments. Unfortunately, at Serra, we had to experience “batting practice” against Norm. He’d be smiling and telling us what he was about to throw and most of us still couldn’t connect. Over the years I’ve shared stories of his Serra baseball prowess, with a grin in the telling. He was great to be around with his upbeat personality. I’m fortunate to have memories from those days… In life, Norm made people like me smile and reading the announcement has made me cry… Condolences to the family and his close friends.

  9. I was in Norm’s class at Serra, so all of my personal interactions and memories of him are from the high school years. I would add to all the things that have been said about Norm is that, even in those early years, Norm was a special guy who was a joy to be around and was someone who had great integrity and would go out of his way to help his fellow human beings. I feel very fortunate to have known him in this life.

  10. As a kid growing up in San Mateo California, I remember following Norm’s statistics in the San Mateo Times Sports Page under “Around the Minors”. Knowing he was a Serra grad , made reading more desirable. God have mercy on his Soul and let Perpetual Light shine upon him.

  11. Hello Sue,
    I was saddened to hear that Stormin’ Norman has joined the All-Star team in the clouds. I did a quick stat search to see when Norm was first with Omaha in 1972/73 while I was in Indianapolis. We both bounced around for the next 4-5 years before I ended with the Bears in 1977 and you and Norm settled in Denver 78-81. When you are playing against another team, as a pitcher you pay more attending to the other teams hitters, but you always know who your counter part is on the other teams bullpen. I remember my hitters complaining about “that lefty’s curve ball”.I have many fond memories of lunches when we were organizing the MLBPA golf tournaments. Norm always greeted me with a big smile and his warm personality. I remember the last time we played golf at Heather Ridge. His back was really bothering him but he gutted it out. We had lunch with Gary last spring which is the last time I saw Norm. I will miss and remembering him.

  12. Sue and family,
    We are thinking of you at this difficult time and sending hugs and prayers. Norm was always so positive and had such a great sense of humor. Like others have said in this guestbook, he was fun to visit with and he will indeed be missed. We hope that your many memories of better times bring smiles to your faces and make you laugh when you think about Norm.
    With heartfelt sympathy,
    Barb and Dan Cline

  13. Norm and I graduated in the same class at Serra/65. May God hold Norm close to him and watch over Sue, his children, grandchildren, and all of his extended family. RIP Norm, Semper Fi

  14. Sue:
    While I have never met you, I was at Serra High School, class of 65 with Norm.
    I send you and your family my deepest condolences and heartfelt, best wishes.

  15. Norm and I played on the Serra Freshman baseball team together, and also on some of the summer baseball teams in the city of San Mateo. Myself and some of the class of ’65 graduates were reminiscing about Norm and other Padres at our Christmas luncheon this past December 17th. I am so very sorry and saddened to hear of his passing. I remember Norm’s competitiveness on the baseball diamond, that huge, change of pace, roundhouse curve ball, and the infectious and always present sense of humor. May the Lord bless and keep his family, and may his soul rest in peace until we meet again.

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