LOUISVILLE, Colo. (KDVR) — People from around the country are pitching in to help those impacted by the Marshall Fire, which includes dozens of young baseball players who lost everything. With baseball season just around the corner, they are getting some help replacing the essentials.
Tragedies bring out the best in our communities. It has brought together two competing youth baseball leagues for the common goal of helping the kids get back to playing ball.
“It’s unbelievable what these families are going through,” said Cristi Knudsen, president of the Louisville Youth Baseball Association.
It is taking a while to realize everything that was lost in the fire that destroyed more than a thousand homes, including baseball gear for dozens of little league players. They lost their helmets, bats, gloves, shoes, gear bags, and catchers equipment.
“We fled without warning,” said Michael Marcus, coach of his son’s team. “This is an overwhelming period of time.”
The Marcus family lost everything in the fire. He said returning to baseball is one thing keeping them going.
“Baseball is just such an amazingly good distraction, for me personally. Being out in the dirt with those kids and helping them get better individually and come together as a team, just means the world to me,” said Marcus.
“To give my son some normalcy and time with his friends after school, just going to hit baseballs, it’s helping him get better, and it’s an amazingly good distraction,” he continued.
And to help, there is now an effort to replace the gear that was lost, the Louisville Youth Baseball Association and the Monarch Little League organization are coming together.
“We know the importance of getting these kids back out on the field and feeling good about the equipment they are using and getting back to some normalcy. Baseball season is coming. We’re trying to get them some equipment, make them feel good about the new season, making sure they feel supported, and the families have what they need to get these kids back out there. Baseball equipment is not cheap, we want to give at least $300 to each of these players and families, so if we can get to $15,000, I would be relieved. We agreed as a board anything above and beyond what we need to support the families, we will return back to the local wildfire fund,” said Knudsen.
The donations are pouring in from around the country.
“Some of my friends in San Francisco who are San Francisco firefighters have donated. It’s definitely spreading,” Knudsen said.
And the thoughtfulness and the generosity are definitely appreciated.
“Some of his teammates went and shoveled snow, with the intent to donate to this GoFundMe, it just unbelievably good,” Marcus said.