West community using softball to heal - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

West community using softball to heal

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ATHENS, TX (KLTV) -

A day at the ballpark and an escape from reality.

"I was ready to get back into my routine, my Friday schedule, which is, of course, watching our girls playing softball."

Those are the words of Donna Honea, who, three weeks ago, watched tragedy rip through her hometown of West.

Like many others, she has found solace in the West softball team.

"Just getting away and being with our team and other parents and members of the West community, I think it does us alot of good," said Honea, who has a daughter on the team.

"We are glad to be back on the softball field competing, that is what West is known for," said West superintendent Marty Crawford. "That means we are getting back to normalcy as quick as we can."

While it may not seem like much, the seven innings of softball has brought the West community, even closer.

"We get to see our neighbors again and our families in the same spot that we have always seen each other," said Sandy Dickerson, the girls athletic coordinator at West. "You don't think about those problems, you are here for the game and here for the kids. Then after it is over you go back to the problems that you had before."

Problems that many from outside West, are trying to help with.

Tonight, it was Athens high school, donating 1,500 dollars to the school.

Athens was hosting the playoff game between West and Central.

They saw it as their opportunity to help.

"We felt very honored to be able to help West in anyway we can and could," said DeeAnn Evans, the girls athletic coordinator at Athens. "We were happy were were given this opportunity in this form and fashion."

"It just shows that we are all in this together, even though we go to different schools, when it comes to a tragedy like this, we are all here to help one another," said Honea.

Thanks to their softball team, the community of West has helped find their own healing.

One inning and one game at a time.

"We have rallied around them and it is certaily something that we will never forget," said Dickerson.

"I certainly hope we can play quite a big longer, so we can continue to experience this joy and this relief on the softball field," said Crawford.

West's opponent, Central, also collected donations and made 'goodie-bags' for the West players.

They will present those to the West player when the series concludes on Saturday.

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