posted on Aug, 25 2004 @ 01:35 PM
WHITMAN, Mass. - The baseballs are lined up neatly, row after row, each in its own glass cubbyhole.
At first glance, the display at Whitman Town Park looks like a trophy case, but a closer look reveals a more somber tribute: "Sgt. Michael L. Tosto,
6-17-03," "Pfc. Jason C. Ludlam, 3-19-04," "Sgt. Darrin K. Potter, 9-29-03."
A memorial to the soldiers killed in the war in Iraq, the display is housed in a simple glass case 16 feet long and 6 feet high and stands just off
the field of play on a ballfield in this suburb about 25 miles south of Boston.
Little League coaches here started their tribute in April by dedicating every game to a fallen soldier. But as the casualties in Iraq multiplied, they
realized the current crop of Little Leaguers would be well into high school before they completed their tribute.
Chris Johnson, president of the Whitman Baseball and Softball Association, thought of writing each name on a baseball and displaying them in a glass
As word spread, people near and far began offering help. Rawlings Sporting Goods donated hundreds of baseballs, volunteers offered to help build the
display case and townspeople planted shrubs around the memorial.
This baseball 'wall' really brings home the sacrifice these families have made and will continue to make.
We get the News Hour with Jim Lehrer in Australia. At the end they have a tribute to soldiers KIA, it's the only time when I personally realise the
tragedy of these young mens' deaths; men(boys?) who are younger than me. Even though I'm not American, these daily 60s tributes stir up emotions in
me I'm not used to having. It's all terribly sad, but the job is being done, I'm just lucky I haven't been personally affected by it yet.