Robert Philbrick, a retired math teacher at the former Memorial Junior High School in South Portland who also coached baseball and basketball, died Sunday. He was 82.

Mr. Philbrick served as field director and zone commissioner for American Legion baseball for 30 years, and as recreation director for the town of Gorham for more than 12 years. In 1988, he was inducted into the Maine Baseball Hall of Fame. In 2006, he was inducted into the Maine Sports Legends Hall of Honor.

“He loved baseball,” said a son, David Philbrick of South Burlington, Vermont. “He loved watching youth excel and grow and get better. He liked to develop young people. It was his way of giving back.”

Sports was always a cornerstone in Mr. Philbrick’s life. He grew up in Bath. His mother died when he was 2 or 3 years old, and he was sent to live with his grandparents.

He attended Morse High School and was a standout on its baseball and basketball teams. He earned a scholarship to play baseball at Boston University, where he graduated in 1954. He went on to earn a master’s degree in education from the University of Southern Maine. Throughout college, he played semi-professional baseball in Canada.

Mr. Philbrick taught math for 33 years. He spent the bulk of his career teaching seventh- and eighth-graders at the former Memorial Junior High School in South Portland. There, he also coached basketball and baseball and served as athletic director from 1958 to 1968.

John Gailey, a retired school administrator who worked at South Portland schools for 22 years, said Tuesday that Philbrick was a good teacher and coach.

“He was an excellent coach and a great mentor as an athletic director,” Gailey said. “He mentored me when I took over as head football coach and I didn’t know what I was doing. He also helped me with baseball. He did that for all the coaches. He was always there to help out.”

As recreation director in Gorham, Mr. Philbrick was instrumental in organizing the town’s youth soccer, basketball, baseball and softball leagues, his son said. He also oversaw the building of new fields and courts in town. His son chuckled Tuesday while describing his father’s coaching style, noting that he was a tough coach, specially with his own kids.

“He loved teaching the fundamentals and he was big on character and integrity,” his son said. “One of his favorite sayings was: ‘Have character. Don’t be a character.’ That type of stuff was important to him. It was his way to use sports to help kids become better people.”

In addition to playing and coaching, Mr. Philbrick umpired and refereed for more than 30 years.

He was the husband of Mary Philbrick, his wife for 65 years. Together, they lived in Gorham and raised nine children.

He was remembered by his children this week as a dedicated family man who worked hard to provide a good life for his family.

“We were fortunate,” said a daughter, Carol Petersen of Gorham. “All nine of us had a good relationship with him.”

His son noted that his father wasn’t a mushy guy, but they each knew he loved them. He called his father a “softie.”

“He would always say, ‘I love you more.’ It was the last thing he said to me,” his son recalled.