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Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Adenhart Mourned In Williamsport, MD

Michael Becker of the Press-Enterprise — which has been doing a bang-up job of covering the events surrounding the Nick Adenhart car crash — forwarded me a piece yesterday about Nick's funeral in Williamsport, Maryland. Excerpt:
Nicholas James Adenhart -- the 22-year-old rookie pitcher for the Angels killed by a suspected drunken driver on April 9 -- called Williamsport his home. He lived on Rockcrest Court. He played in the Halfway Little League for Gehr Construction. He attended Springfield Middle School and Saint Maria Goretti, a private parochial school in nearby Hagerstown, then Williamsport High School after his sophomore year.

Rod Steiner, retired baseball coach for Williamsport High School, lit a candle for his former player, Angels pitcher Nick Adenhart, at Greenlawn cemetery in Williamsport, Md.

He acted up in class. He stole Christmas decorations with his buddies and charmed his way out of sticky situations. He pitched a no-hitter and led Williamsport High to a state championship game his senior year. Even after being drafted by the Angels in 2004, Adenhart returned every offseason to spend time with his father, Jim.

"He loved this place," Jim Adenhart said. But the town loved Nick Adenhart even more. Without Adenhart, professional baseball scouts would have had little reason to make the 77-mile journey from Baltimore or Washington, D.C., to the small river town on the West Virginia border.

By 2003, they arrived by the dozens, toting notebooks and radar guns, and camped behind the backstop for each 94 mph fastball. They loved Adenhart's composure and took note of his poise -- qualities, scouts surmised, he learned by growing up in a town where nothing was achieved without hard work.

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Man, I read these stories and still get weepy. Damn emotions!
 

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