Ned Battey was one of the premier defensive catchers in baseball during the early 1960s. He helped lead his Twins team twice into pennant challenges against New York but ultimately fell short both times.
He also developed what is known as ‘normal ovariotomy’ surgery in the late 19th century as a treatment for hysteria and hystero-epilepsy (Longo, 1979). These innovations are considered unethical by modern gynaecologists.
Early Life and Education
Ned Battey was an actor of television and film who became best-known for his infamous performance as the unwitting vacationer raped by an outbacksman in John Boorman’s 1972 western Deliverance. Additionally, Battey played an incompetent FBI agent in Silver Streak (1975) as well as being introduced as Lex Luthor’s assistant Otis in Superman.
He was part of the 1965 Minnesota Twins team which won the American League Pennant, but lost in the World Series to Sandy Koufax and Los Angeles Dodgers. As a defensive catcher with an outstanding arm and hit.297 that season.
He is survived by his wife Maura Jean (O’Donnell) Battey, sons Welles and Gardner, daughters Joanna and Sarah Strong as well as grandchildren Brooks Vydra Edward Vydra and Phoebe Battey. He was an ardent family man who enjoyed golf and bass fishing.
Ned Battey found himself appearing in numerous films and TV shows throughout the 1970s, from thrillers such as “The Deadly Tower” (1975) to playing an FBI agent under fire from an unstable sniper in Silver Streak (1976) as well as acting as Lex Luthor’s goofball assistant Otis in “Superman (1978).
In 2001, he returned to theatre by appearing in London’s West End revival production of Tennessee Williams’ Cat on a Hot Tin Roof as Big Daddy Pollit, drawing considerable acclaim.
At one point he also appeared as the star of family-oriented series The Wool Cap and musically contributed to TV specials for Dolly Parton and The Smothers Brothers, as well as playing musical accompaniment on the Homicide: Life on the Street and Streets of Laredo television series he played musical accompaniment on specials for. Additionally he was an accomplished cellist.
Battey was a respected community member who took pleasure in golfing and bass guitar playing – two activities he pursued avidly as well as being an accomplished artist. Married to Jean Davis of Chelsea Vermont, Hoyt Edward Battey III of Montpelier Vermont and Janet Dene McElhaney (d. 1998) were their three children together.
Once his baseball career concluded, Battey entered the film industry. He appeared in numerous feature films such as Silver Streak (1975) and Superman (1978) where he had several key roles including that of Lex Luthor’s assistant Otis Otis Otis Otis Otis Otis; in addition he acted on the television series Friendly Fire and miniseries Robert Kennedy and His Times before succumbing to cancer himself and dying in 2000. His son Corey Battey currently works in acting while daughter Sonia Battey works behind the camera producing films.