I hope this letter helps out the younger generation in Wilkes County.
It’s a very hot August and it reminds me of my younger school days 55 years ago, when I was an eighth-grader at C.C. Wright Elementary School. Our principal, Rex Whittington, and my eighth grade teacher, Tom Harmon, came up to me and said we’re having a baseball game.
All of us eighth grade students then went outside to the ball field.
Of course, being a girl, I walked over with the other girls and planned to be a cheerleader as most girls would.
Then, Mr. Whittington and Mr. Harmon said get your glove, you’re playing baseball with the boys. I didn’t own a glove, so I borrowed one, a left-handed glove from a student. I’m right-handed, but I put it on my right hand and went out to center field. All I was thinking was I hope I catch my ball and don’t make an error.
Well, the game started and everyone was having a good time playing and the girls were cheering their hearts out.
All of a sudden, the boy at bat hit an outfield ball coming right at me. I nabbed it out of the air and fell backward into the blackberry patch and sat there.
The principal, teacher and umpire came running over since I didn’t get up from where I fell backward on my seat. The umpire said, “Miss, you’re holding up the game. Hurry and get up.”
I said, “Mr. Umpire, I can’t get up.” He said, “Why not?” I told him my long hair was caught in the briar patch and I still had the caught ball in my glove with a broken little right finger, my pinky.
Well, Mr. Whittington proceeded to untangle my hair from the blackberry briars.
I got untangled and stood up with that left-handed glove with the ball in it. By then, I felt like I owned it.
The umpire said let’s play ball.
It took a little while for the broken finger to heal, but it was all worth it to play baseball.