Whitesburg KY

Our schools must not care

To the Editor :

I got on the Kentucky High School Athletic Association (KHSAA) website the other night to look up Kentucky state baseball records. I don’t know why I thought about it after all these years, but I did.

I got looking through them and I noticed that my name is not on it. Most of the categories they had I was not qualified for because I didn’t play enough games or get enough at bats, even though I was a starter for three years and played in nearly every game my freshman year. Teams in southeastern Kentucky will never play in enough games to meet the requirements unless they play in tournaments.

There were two categories I did qualify for, though, and my stats were definitely good enough to be on it, but my name wasn’t there at all. The more I thought about it the more I realized that there were other ball players I know who should also be on that site. Not just from Whitesburg, but from any of the schools in Letcher County, as well as some of the schools in Knott and Perry counties.

I know it might be a little silly for me to be upset about it but it really bothers me, so much so that I’ve actually cried over it. I know that I wasn’t a particularly memorable baseball player, but it would have been nice if I had gotten credit for what few things I did accomplish in the sport.

As a Little Leaguer I always heard stories of all these great high school ball players, Howie Mason and Dannie Benson, just to mention a couple. When I got into high school I had plenty of great teammates and I knew quite a few boys from Jenkins, Neon, and Letcher who were more than just outstanding ball players. We played hard for our schools and for each other, but for what?

I feel like our schools have let us down. The only thing I can possibly think of that would have kept us from being in those records is the school not sending in our stats like they should have. I don’t believe our school cared enough about us to bother to get our names out there, maybe providing help to us to possibly do better things in our lives other than work in the coal mines.

I realized a long time ago that baseball has never been the most popular sport in Kentucky, but I never thought that people would be so indifferent that we can forget the young men who have gave so much to make the sport exciting. I hope that those responsible for turning in the young men’s and young women’s statistics do their job and make sure that they are acknowledged for their achievements. There are too many great athletes in southeastern Kentucky to be forgotten.

My memories of all my coaches, the great teammates I’ve had, and the great players from other schools in southeastern Kentucky will always be with me, but no one else will ever know what I’ve experienced. My heart has been broken, not just for me but for everyone long forgotten who were not given the recognition they worked hard for and deserve.

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