Nelson "Nellie" Briles, 61, of Greensburg, former Major League Baseball star and World Series hero, passed away unexpectedly Sunday, Feb. 13, 2005, in Florida. Nellie's baseball career spanned over a quarter-century as a player of 15 years, as a broadcaster, as the founder of the Pittsburgh Pirates Alumni Association and as a baseball executive. Although "Nellie" is well-known for his accomplishments in baseball, he was equally proud of his family. Nelson is survived by his loving wife of 40 years, Ginger; his mother, Nyle; his four children, Kelley, David, Christina and Sarah; and eight grandchildren. In his acceptance speech for the "Pride of the Pirates" lifetime achievement award (2003), Nellie stated that "a strong family is the foundation for a fruitful and happy life." Nelson Kelley Briles will be remembered not only as a star athlete but also as a dedicated husband and father. Family and friends will be received at the KEPPLE-GRAFT FUNERAL HOME INC., 524 N. Main St., Greensburg, Thursday from 7 to 9 p.m. and Friday from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. (The funeral home will be opening for visitation for the public Friday from 1 to 9 p.m.) A funeral service celebrating Nellie's life will be held Saturday at 11 a.m. in the First Presbyterian Church, 300 S. Main St., Greensburg. (Please, everyone go directly to the church on Saturday.) In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial donations be made to the Nellie Briles Fund, c/o Community Foundation of Westmoreland County, 101 Ehalt St., Greensburg, PA 15601. Terence L. Graft, funeral director, entrusted with the arrangements. www.kepple-graft.com for information.