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Jim "The Rookie" Morris honored at BBYF Gala
Jim Morris -- baseball's oldest rookie, who defied all odds to make his major league debut at age 35 and was the subject of the 2002 Disney film "The Rookie" -- was honored at the 2009 Bobby Bragan Youth Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award Gala on Oct. 30 at the new Omni Fort Worth Hotel. 

This year marks the 10th anniversary of Morris's big league debut, which occurred in 1999 against the Texas Rangers at The Ballpark in Arlington.

View photos from the 2009 Gala
 
Bragan and friends compile unique collection
Bobby Bragan and Special Olympics volunteer Jim Albright have been hard at work collecting autographed baseballs from every Cy Young award winner. With their collection now complete, the two are looking for someone to purchase the collection with proceeds benefiting Special Olympics. Read more in the Star-Telegram.
 
Scholarship Winners Honored by Rangers
This year's scholarship winners and finalists were honored at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington on July 27. The students were introduced from the field just prior to the game against the Detroit Tigers.

Above, the scholarship winners pose for a photo with baseball legend Bobby Bragan. Below, Mascot Rangers Captain horses around with the students before they are introduced to the crowd.
 
Bragan honored by Westside Rotary Club
Bobby Bragan was given the prestigious Paul Harris award at Westside Rotary Club meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 22 at the Ridglea Country Club. Bragan spoke about his career in baseball and recited "Casey at the Bat" at the club's weekly meeting.

He is pictured with Fort Worth Cats and BBYF president John Dittrich (far left), Senate candidate Roger Williams (left) and Cats' owner Carl Bell (right). Williams, a former TCU baseball player and coach and Texas Secretary of State, introduced Bragan before his remarks.
 
In Memoriam: Mary Esch
Mary Esch, the wife of longtime BBYF board member and past president John Esch, passed away on Aug. 26, 2009 after a courageous battle with leukemia.

Mary and John raised their two sons in Fort Worth and Mary became a champion of community work, tirelessly volunteering and campaigning for the March of Dimes, The Oakridge School, the Easter Seals Society, and
Cancer Care, among many other charities.
Mary loved people and had a natural aptitude for
bringing them together. This, combined with an
impeccable sense of style and her childlike sense of fun, made her a superlative event planner. Nobody could throw a party like Mary, and she put this talent to good use, creating fundraising events for the causes she cared about so deeply.

Mary joined John in giving her time, talent, and resources to BBYF.  As perpetual scholarship donors  they proudly awarded a scholarship in their name each year to a worthy recipient.  Mary also co-chaired several Lifetime Achievement Award Gala’s. Several past recipients of the Mary and John Esch Perpetual Scholarship Award sent John their condolences, and expressed to John how much his and Mary’s gift has meant to their education and to their lives.

Mary’s love of life and friendship brought a joy to those who knew her that they will carry with them always.



 
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