Orlando Babe Ruth strives to inclusively grow youth baseball and softball in our community by developing young girls and boys skills, physical and mental development, respect, and love of the game through promoting growth in character and

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Prayers for Austin

OBR family,

It is with the heaviest of hearts that I must share some extremely sad news. Last week one of our 13U Storm and OBR players, Austin Harrison unexpectedly passed away.  Many of you were lucky enough to have been around Austin over these past 4 years that he has played baseball with us.  Austin was nothing short of the brightest light in any room he entered. Always encouraging to his toughest opponents, the first to thank his coaches after any game or practice, and ready to play baseball at any time.  He was an amazing gift to have in our lives and will continue to be one of my life’s most incredible memories. We will all miss him very much.

I was blessed to have met Austin for the first time that his mom, Angela brought him to Ben Crosby for his first practice.  He had never played baseball before. That day Austin wouldn’t let Angela leave his side and was not ready to step on the field, yet.  Seeing this, I walked over to welcome him and told him that when he was ready to come out and join us.  Maybe 10 minutes later he was out there and we began what was to be his favorite thing to do with some kids that would eventually become his best friends.  The next season we put nicknames on the back of our team jerseys. Austin’s nickname of course was “Smiles”. He was the greatest “teammate” any kid can have.

For the past 4 years, Austin became one of the best players at OBR for his age group, eventually making the Storm team and numerous All-Star teams.  This past spring he earned his first Championship as a Marlin in the Majors division.  I was lucky enough to be able to bring Austin to and from practice many nights and have him on my teams for many seasons. Although it became more and more difficult because he had become too good to hide in a draft!  He literally grew into a fine young man on our fields. For this, I am very thankful to have witnessed.

There are a number of ideas being circulated around the league on ways to honor Austin. Hopefully, soon we can also share these ideas. We want to make sure his legacy lives on in the best possible way.

At this time we do not have any information on services however there is some financial assistance being arranged to which we will soon share.   Thank you for reading this long email and I hope you will take a moment to say a prayer for the Harrison family during this unimaginable time. We love them very much.

Thank you for your valuable time,
James Savino

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