"That's What We Do" - Head Coach Darold Butler Of The JRW Little League Team August 23, 2014
What the JRW team showed us this summer we were eagerly waiting to see.
Some events this summer will go down in the annals of history, most Americans were not happy to see.
The tragedies, that usually mark the landscape of this country was in ample supply this summer.
But in the midst of the mayhem and unrest we've become too accustomed , a young baseball team from the south side of the city brought a collective smile on a country's face.
I'm certain I'm not the only one who had never heard of this aptly named Little League team.
As I've noted before baseball has never been my game of choice.
Major League Baseball was too slow and plodding for me, too much standing around doing nothing.
The Jackie Robinson West team changed all that, a group of 11 and 12 year old boys were playing baseball with energy, great skill and fun.
I watched my first Little League game in complete awe, these young athletes were playing on a Major League level, they won that game, and they were gracious and showed how to win with dignity and maturity.
No showboating or gloating, these Little Leaguers tipped their caps to the opposing teams' side.
It was evident these boys were taught how to respect not only the game, but their fellow players, as well.
They played with the athleticism of professional Major Leaguers, yet they are boys.
These Boys of Summer showed the world that everything you may have heard or seen was not the totality of the young people in Chicago, these boys actually represent the majority of the young people of this city.
They did us proud as they spoke on the national and international stage, articulate and humble.
The professionals could take lessons.
The hoopla and parades will soon be over, these boys will rejoin their normal life, we wish them well.
Yet the pride they have instilled in this city, and the world is immeasurable.
It was a memorable summer, and thanks to the entire JRW family, one we can remember with tears of joy and happiness.