JUCO First Pitch Honors Vets

Lining the back of the ball field with American flags in-hand, stood veterans from every branch of the military. They entered the field from both corners, the northeast and the southwest. The hum of the helicopter was heard before it was seen and then it came from above the Lincoln Park golf course to land in the center of Suplizio Field.

L to R: Dr. Korrey Klein and Desiree Medrano walking off Suplizio Field following the opening pitch.

Memorial Day 2022, was day three of the Junior College World Series annual event where 10 teams arrive and only one team leaves a champion. But the night of May 30, the baseball players and community made it clear the champions were the veterans. Desiree Medrano, FHW Director of Materials Management and U.S. Army veteran, exited the Care Flight helicopter from center field and made her way to the pitcher’s mound.

“I’ve been practicing my pitching all week,” Desiree said. “But I was so nervous.”

The stands were full and her own cheering section made themselves known with loud hoops and hollers. Desiree’s daughter had an American Flag she held from the stands so Desiree could spot her family and friends from the sky above.

Thunder Mountain Civil Air Patrol with Desiree Medrano facing the military branch flags on Suplizio Field.

Dr. Korrey Klein, FHW President and CEO was waiting on the field in his matching custom-made FHW baseball jersey and welcomed Desiree mid-field with a handshake. A baseball came from the sidelines to Desiree and she made her way to the pitcher’s mound for a fireball throw that landed in Dr. Klein’s glove just above his head.

“Good thing Dr. Klein is so tall,” she said laughing.

And the crowd went wild.

Suplizio Field looking south, panorama photo.

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