tragedy that took the lives of Mitch Maclean, Tanner Craswell and Tabitha Stepple. When I first heard about the murder-suicide, my initial reaction was "Shit. Wonder what led to that?" And I assumed it was some kind of domestic family dispute, and didn't think about it much more. Then a few hours later when I saw on twitter that these were young baseball players who were alumni of Vauxhall, and had played for PBA and the Lethbridge Bulls, my reaction changed to "OH! SHIT!" and my heart sank. Hey - I'm not a perfect human being. I know I shouldn't have felt any differently. A life is a life. But somehow I felt closer to these young men. I could relate to their hopes and dreams. I could only imagine how their families felt. It hit me a lot harder than a random anonymous murder. The baseball family is a fairly close knit group. I might have umpired games these boys played in. I might have cheered for (or against) them from the stands. In baseball, fans say derogatory remarks about players or teams ("Yankees Suck!"), teams battle against each other, coaches argue with umpires, umpires eject players, but in the end there are no hard feelings. We all love the game and there is a mutual respect among all the participants.
But this post isn't about me and my feelings. It's about helping to spread the word on how you can help out. A memorial fund has been set up for these baseball players. To donate, please visit any Bank of Nova Scotia Branch and tell them you are donating to the "Tanner Craswell and Mitch McLean Memorial Fund" or account number 00059 0157317. From the comfort of your couch you can also send an email money transfer to firstname.lastname@example.org. (Please note the spelling. It's the boys initials TC and MM followed by Memorial Fund). For more information please take a look at the Prairie Baseball Academy, the Lethbridge Bulls or the Vauxhall Baseball Academy websites.
A trust fund has also been opened for Tabitha Stepple. Please contact the Northside Scotia Bank in Lethbridge for details.
A trust fund has also been set up for the lone survivor of this senseless massacre, Shanya Conway, who is currently recovering. You can donate through the TD Canada Trust bank.
Hope all my readers have a safe holiday season.