Longtime Archbishop Curley baseball coach Al Frank, who coached the Friars for 41 seasons, died Friday evening after a long illness, the school announced.

Frank, 74, was 546-423 during his coaching career, and he was named to the Maryland State Association of Baseball Coaches Hall of Fame in 1997.

Frank coached at Curley from 1963 until he retired before the 2004 season. The Friars won six Maryland Scholastic Association and Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference titles during Frank's tenure at the school.


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Brooks Norris, the current Friars coach, was a member of Frank's final MIAA A Conference championship team in 2001.

"He was more than just a baseball coach. Everything he did on the field and in the classroom, it was getting you prepared and teaching you to be better, whether it was in life, in school or on the field," Norris said. "That stuck with me the most."

"Obviously, the baseball is what I loved, and I tried to soak up all the knowledge he had," Norris added.

With Frank coaching the team, Curley also won titles in 1969, 1970, 1978, 1983 and 1999.

Frank, who also taught history at the school from 1962 to 2003, dealt with a variety of health issues in recent years, according to Norris, including cancer, congestive heart failure and trouble with his liver and kidneys.

But through all his health problems, Frank was "always dedicated and working hard -- a great example," Norris said.

"He was the man. That's about it," Norris said. "Of everyone who played for him, no one ever said he was easy, but everyone said they respected him. Everyone grew from having that experience."

Viewings for Frank will be held Monday, July 9, in the chapel at Archbishop Curley from 3 to 5 p.m., and 7 to 9 p.m. A christian wake service will take place at 7:30 p.m. The funeral will be Tuesday, July 10, at Archbishop Curley at 10 a.m.

dean.jones@baltsun.com

A previous version of this article misstated the year the school opened. The Baltimore Sun regrets the error.