It has become one of the most anticipated traditions for the Queen Creek Baseball team. For now the sixth consecutive year in remembering the tragic events of September 11th, 2001, the Bulldogs take a trip to the VA Hospital in Phoenix to spend time with veterans.
“Just the faces actually on the kids and the veterans themselves, is more rewarding than I can do with words,” said Queen Creek baseball coach Michael Campbell. “Our kids get to talk with people and really make a connection with people that have done the ultimate thing for us.”
The players themselves will tell you that the veterans with this experience, do more for them than they could possibly do in return.
“It is definitely very humbling,” stated senior pitcher and outfielder Bryce Dobbs who is also the starting quarterback of the football team. “It give you a whole other perspective that we are here being able to play because of what these people do and it just makes you appreciate it a whole lot more.”
“This is my third year doing it and I love it,” added senior pitcher and GCU baseball commit Josh Andrews. “It’s nice to give back to the vets a little bit. Obviously it’s not giving them what they give to us but it is as much as we can do and anything helping them out a little bit is worth our time.”
Coach Campbell says that he now has former players who have graduated from Queen Creek and his baseball program will still call and text on September 11th every year to tell him they wish they could be there for their annual visit. It is Campbell’s hope that this experience every year helps his players build bonds with people that will last long past high school.
“It has become a tradition and the kids look forward to it,” Campbell mentioned. “They never forget it and that’s what is important. Hopefully they will continue throughout their lives to show appreciation to people that do thing’s like the vets do.”