Buck O'Neil had an enormous impact on the world of baseball and the lives of the everyday people he touched. Buck spent many days and nights supporting the Royals from the same seat behind home plate at Kauffman Stadium, both as a scout and a fan. To honor Buck, the Buck O'Neil Legacy Seat program fills "Buck's Seat" for every home game with a member of the community who, on a large or small scale, embodies an aspect of Buck's spirit.
Friday, April 10 - Steve Pack
As the Royals open the renovated Kauffman Stadium and celebrate our 40th anniversary, we recognize Steve Pack, a long-time Kansas City season ticket holder, who has been there for almost every pitch! The Prairie Village, Kan., resident has been a Royals season ticket holder since 1969 and, prior to the Royals, his father held season tickets for the Kansas City Athletics and the Kansas City Blues minor league baseball team, introducing Steve to Kansas City baseball at an early age. Steve's three sons grew up at The K, a place he has always admired for its emphasis on providing a perfect family entertainment option in Kansas City. We thank Steve and all our dedicated fans for helping us celebrate 40 years of Royals baseball!
Saturday, April 11 - Pat Delano
As the project executive for the Hunt-Walton Joint Venture construction team, Pat has been instrumental in the Kauffman Renovations and Improvements Project. Along with his team, the St. Louis native - who now calls Kansas City home - has been dedicated to the project since the beginning. Away from the construction site, Pat has used his skills to help organize golf tournaments for the National Organ Donor Society as well as for a paraplegic family member for nearly 20 years. The Royals thank Pat and all those behind the Hunt-Walton Joint Venture construction team for their part in pushing Royals baseball into a new era with "The New" Kaufman Stadium.
Sunday, April 12 - David Smith
On Jan. 30, 17-year-old David Smith acted on instinct when he became a local hero during a school basketball game. David, a recent graduate of DeLaSalle Education Center, dropped the basketball to jump to the protection of some young fans including his 10-year-old sister when gun shots rung out in the gym during a game.
Monday, April 13 - Jim Hall
This past December, Jim turned an ordinary game of handball with a friend into a life-saving event that showed the importance of being CPR certified. The Lenexa, Kan., resident acted on pure instincts when he used his CPR training to save his friend Bob Friskel, who collapsed with a heart attack while playing handball at the local YMCA.
Tuesday, April 14 - LeRoy Zimmerman
LeRoy is a tireless volunteer who serves low income seniors in Kansas City's urban core, often focusing on home repairs such as building wheelchair ramps, widening doorways and installing safety upgrades in bathrooms. In addition, the Overland Park, Kan., resident is active in prison ministry and serves on the board of Metro Lutheran Ministry.
Wednesday, April 15 - Jim "Mudcat" Grant
In honor of Jackie Robinson Day, the Royals recognize Jim "Mudcat" Grant, a former Major Leaguer who played from 1958-1971 and the first African-American to post a 20-win season in the American League (Minnesota Twins, 1965). Recently, Grant has dedicated himself to studying and promoting the history of African Americans in baseball. In 2006, he released the book The Black Aces: Baseball's Only African-American Twenty-Game Winners, featuring chapters on each of the African Americans to have at least one 20-win season as well as featuring Negro League players who Mudcat feels would have been 20-game winners if they were allowed to play in the Majors.
Friday, April 24 - Jackie Buycks
For the past couple years, Jackie Buycks, along with her sisters and business partners Jill Kemp and Joyce Brown, have been cooking up everything from homemade cinnamon rolls, dinner rolls, doughnuts, and more as the co-owners of Big Momma's Bakery in Raytown, Mo. Away from the successful bakery, Jackie and her sisters spend time serving others food at the Good Samaritan Christian Center every Wednesday night and Sunday morning.
Saturday, April 25 - Kent Bender
Kent Bender is a meat supervisor at a local Hy-Vee that goes above and beyond when it comes to helping out a local community assistance program. Working with the Hope Network food pantry, Kent evaluates his inventory and special promotional offers to provide an excellent and large selection of meat that helps the pantry and feeding program secure up to 10 times more food than normal.
Sunday, April 26 - Alexander Austin
Local artist Alexander Austin has had a long, difficult journey in life, but he hasn't forgotten those that helped him along the way. Once homeless, the Lee's Summit, Mo., resident found refuge at the City Union Mission, where he showered, ate his meals and regained his confidence. Once he got back on his feet and began sharing his murals and art with Kansas City, Austin jumped at the opportunity to return to City Union Mission and paint a mural in their new facility. The mural, which was recently completed, depicts five homeless men like Alexander who are striving to find their own place in life.
Monday, April 27 - Fred Bleedorn
Since 1973, Fred Bleedorn has donated 25 gallons of platelets for the Community Blood Centers in the Kansas City area. Originally, a Minnesota native, Fred now calls Olathe, Kan., home and donates platelets every three weeks. A recent retiree, Fred also spends time playing in golf tournaments for charity as well as working with Catholic Charities each week.
Tuesday, April 28 - Colonel Thomas Weafer
Colonel Thomas Weafer enlisted in the US Army in June 1973 and was accepted to attend the United States Military Academy at West Point the following year. He has served the US army in many capacities since then and has earned the Parachutist and Air Assault Badges, the Ranger Tab and is qualified as a Joint Specialty Officer. In 2005, he became the Director of the Command and General Staff School at Fort Leavenworth, Kan. After 32 years of active duty in the army, Colonel Weafer, who is married to retired Colonel Ann Horner and has a son, Jack, will retire this summer in the Kansas City area.
Wednesday, April 29 - Joe Nastasi
Joe Nastasi is an active community member, spreading his time and talents between the Center School Board and the Red Bridge YMCA Community Advisory Council. He also serves as a local Boy Scout leader and Cubmaster and as a youth coach. The Kansas City, Mo., resident and father of three also finds time to provide pro-bono legal advice to the City Union Mission and others in need.
Thursday, April 30 - Miles Nelson
Miles Nelson, who celebrated his 100th birthday on April 21, doesn't let his age slow him down when it comes to community work. The Kansas City, Mo., resident delivers food for Meals on Wheels on Mondays and works at the Clay County Clothes Closet on Tuesdays. He's also active in his church, helping to mow the church grounds during the summer.
Monday, May 4 - Dennis Hurla
Coach Dennis Hurla has led the Bishop Ward High School baseball team to six straight Kansas 4A state championship titles, earning the honor of being named the 2008 Coach of the Year by the American Baseball Coaches Association/Diamond Sports Company High School Division 1 Region 5. The Edwardsville, Kan., resident is the only coach from Kansas to receive this honor.
Tuesday, May 5 - Ron Johnson
Ron Johnson is the founder of the Kansas City Autism Training Center, starting the school after struggling to find a suitable service for his son, who is now 20 and diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder. The Gardner, Kan., resident, who serves as the executive director of the center without compensation, created the center to provide professional, research based interventions and training for children diagnosed with autism and their families.
Wednesday, May 6 - DeMorris Smith
Today, May 6, marks the anniversary of Jackie Robinson's first game as a Kansas City Monarch. In honor of this anniversary, DeMorris Smith, son of Hall of Fame pitcher Hilton Smith, joins us in the Buck O'Neil Legacy Seat today to help us remember Robinson's contribution to baseball. DeMorris' father is credited with bringing Robinson to the team back in 1945.
Thursday, May 7 - Melanie Chezem
Melanie Chezem, a resident of Shawnee, Kan., and mother of two daughters, founded Purses of Promise, a locally-based non-profit foundation dedicated to brightening the lives of domestic abuse victims in the Kansas City area. Behind Melanie's leadership, Purses of Promise collects gently-used or new handbags, fill them with necessary items and distribute them to women in domestic abuse shelters, hoping each gift symbolizes the promise of a new beginning.
Thursday, May 14 - Mary Lou Kegler
A Board Member for Susan G. Komen for the Cure, Mary Lou Kegler was diagnosed with breast cancer in January 1998. Now, as a tireless advocate for those who cannot advocate for themselves, she is a firm believer that early detection saves live. When asked what has been key to her survival, Mary Lou says, "A very positive attitude saved me, my faith sustained me and positive influences keeps me going." The Royals welcome Mary Lou as well as all those touched by breast cancer who are with us today.
Friday, May 15 - Johanna Koskinen
Johanna Koskinen founded the Hepatitis C HIV Ministry Outreach five years ago and now serves as executive director of the organization, which provides free screening, testing and support for people affected by the diseases. Currently, Johanna is working with Maurice Hines, the brother of the late Gregory Hines, to open the Hines House of Hope in Missouri, a place providing emotional and social support for people affected by Hepatitis C and liver disease.
Saturday, May 16 - Mike Mathews
Mike Mathews is the director of St. James Place, a food pantry and soup kitchen in Kansas City. For the past two years, Mike has organized Hit-It-A-Ton, a program chaired by Royals Billy Butler and Mike Aviles. For every home run the two Royals hit this season, the equivalent of a ton of food is donated. Last season, the campaign raised nearly $100,000. Joining Mike Mathews at tonight's game is Tom Turner, director of the Bishop Sullivan Center, the parent organization to St. James Place. This year the annual Royals Wives Food Drive, held May 25-30 at The K, benefits St. James Place, Bishop Sullivan Center and Harvesters.
Sunday, May 17 - Bob Swafford
Bob Swafford, who celebrated his 80th birthday last September, has been an active leader in the Richmond, Mo., community for more than 50 years, serving on the Richmond Chambers of Commerce, Kiwanis Club, Ray County Industrial Development Corporation and Ray County Memorial Hospital Board of Trustees.
Tuesday, May 19 - Rebecca Queen
Rebecca Queen, who graduates from Pembroke High School this month, has been a volunteer buddy for the YMCA Challenger program for the past three years, also dedicating hours and energy as a YMCA coach and a member of the YMCA Challenger Advisory Board. In addition to her involvement with the YMCA, Rebecca is also on the Youth Advisory Board for Women's Intersport Network for Kansas City.
Wednesday, May 20 - Bob Shaumeyer
Bob Shaumeyer, a Vietnam veteran with the US Navy, retired this past year after 39 years working for the State of Kansas. In his position, the Olathe, Kan., resident worked tirelessly with the Kansas State School for the Blind, helping to provide visually impaired students an education. Since retirement, Bob has dedicated his time to working with the Traditions Fire Company and Museum, providing fire safety education.
Thursday, May 21 - Jake Simonitsch
Jake Simonitsch served in the Air Force in World War II and the Korean War, spending time as a POW in a German prison camp. Today, the Independence, Mo., resident, who turns 91 years old this summer, continues to serve the community, sharing his experiences to bring history to life while also volunteering at the 1859 Jail in Independence.
Monday, May 25 - SSG Robert L. Oliver
Staff Sergeant (SSG) Robert L. Oliver has 11 years of active Army Service, has done three deployments and is currently serving as the Combat Aviation Brigade's School Non-Commissioned Officer in Charge at Ft. Riley. A third generation service member, the Merriam, Kan., native is joined today by his family including his father, a retired master sergeant. The Royals are pleased to welcome and honor SSG Oliver and all those who have or are currently serving our country to today's game.
Tuesday, May 26 - Sue Jasperse
Sue Jasperse is a registered nurse who received the Johnson County Senior Volunteer of the Year award in 2008. The Prairie Village, Kan., resident is an active volunteer for Heart to Heart International, helping out in the organization's free medical assistance unit and making numerous trips around the country.
Wednesday, May 27 - Duane Lewis
Duane Lewis, currently the director of Steppingstone, has dedicated much of his life to working with abused or neglected children. Working as a social worker and therapist in his past, Duane also now serves on a task force that deals with the needs of young Missourians in foster care.
Friday, May 29 - Colleen Foudree
Colleen Foudree has been an active member of the eastern Jackson County community since moving there nearly 35 years ago. She was a member of the Independence (Mo.) Jaycee Wives and has belonged to Junior Service League. She has also worked closely with Hope House, a shelter for domestic abuse victims.
Saturday, May 30 - Rev. Spencer Barrett
Since 2003, Rev. Spencer Barrett has been the pastor at Bethel A.M.E. Church in Kansas City, Mo., the church where Buck O'Neil was a lifelong member. During his time in Kansas City, Rev. Barrett and his congregation have been supportive in the building of the Buck O'Neil Education and Research Center. As a community leader, Rev. Barrett advocates improved wages and health care for workers, as well as dignity in the workplace.
Sunday, May 31 - Jane Rinehart
Jane Rinehart works tirelessly to promote academic debate at Central High in Kansas City, Mo., bringing the school's program to national prominence. Through her hard work and devotion to high school debate, she has given many students who would not otherwise have an opportunity the chance to excel and pursue college. This year, she was named the Debate Kansas City Coach of the Year.
Friday, June 12 - Margie Burton
Margie Burton, a grandmother of four from Lenexa, Kan., is always willing to jump in and lend a helping hand, volunteering for the Victim Assistance Unit at the Johnson County DA's office, the Up Lift Breakfast program at St. Paul's, Harvesters and more.
Saturday, June 13 - Robbie Sue King
Robbie Sue King recently retired as the director of the Good Samaritan Center in Lamar, Mo., an organization she founded 32 years ago. Under her leadership, the center, which has grown from 100 to more than 500 families since its creation, provides food and clothing assistance to low income families at no charge.
Sunday, June 14 - Rita Oliver
Rita is the owner of Community Access, a non-profit organization she started in 2000 to help support people with developmental disabilities. Under her guidance, the Independence, Mo., agency helps clients and their families adapt to living in their own homes in the community.
Tuesday, June 16 - Ernest Smith
Ernest Smith has been a leader in civil rights within the community of Excelsior Springs, Mo., ending years of segregation in a local cafÃ©. He has advocated for the disenfranchised, of all races, by serving 15 years on the board of directors of Good Samaritan Center, an emergency social services agency.
Wednesday, June 17 - Janet Oleson
For more than 30 years, Janet Oleson, along with her husband, Dean, who passed away this past year, opened their Lenexa, Kan., home to more than 100 foster children in our area. The couple, who made the decision to adopt seven of the children, demonstrated a commitment and love for the community to each of the children they invited into their lives.
Thursday, June 18 - Stephanie Pikell
Stephanie Pikell works six days a week at her job only to spend her off day volunteering for Kansas City Hospice, a nonprofit organization offering services for people at any stage of serious illness. While there, the Lenexa, Kan., resident spends time with patients, delivers meals, helps with office work and lends a hand wherever it is needed.
Friday, June 19 - Alesia Hamilton
Named the 2008 St. Joseph, Mo., School District Teacher of the Year, Alesia Hamilton is a kindergarten teacher who helped her 71-year-old student, Alferd Williams, learn to read. Mrs. Hamilton, a Savannah, Mo., resident, has gained national attention for her love of teaching and for accepting the challenge of teaching Williams, who requested her personally to help him learn.
Saturday, June 20 - Dr. Marjorie Williams
Dr. Marjorie Williams, the superintendent of the Hickman Mills C-1 School District for the past nine years, has worked tirelessly to improve educational opportunities for children throughout Kansas City. In the education field for nearly 35 years, Dr. Williams, a strong community leader and advocate, is the first African American woman to ever hold the position in the state of Missouri's oldest consolidated school district.
Sunday, June 21 - Father of the Year Winner - Matthew Gwynn
Sunday's Buck O'Neil Legacy Seat recipient is Matthew Gwynn, the winner of the Royals annual Father of the Year Essay Contest. Matthew accepted the Father of the Year honor at a reception on Thursday, June 11at Kauffman Stadium. Matthew and his wife, Tamera, have been married for 22 years and have five children and one grandchild. Their daughter Katherine is a tenth grader who submitted the winning essay about her father. The Father of the Year Essay Contest was created by the National Center for Fathering in 1992 to raise awareness about the importance of fathering.
Monday, June 29 - Willie Arthur Smith
In 1969, Willie Arthur Smith founded The Marching Cobras, a premier Kansas City drill team that has performed throughout the United States and abroad. In his leadership role, Smith has impacted thousands of inner city youth in his desire to develop productive and successful contributors to both the team and to our community.
Tuesday, June 30 - Paul Yarick
Paul has worked tirelessly as the leader for "Bless the School" ministry, leading the charge for completely repainting two inner-city elementary schools in Kansas City, Mo. He has also spearheaded the installation of two playgrounds, helping to create an improved environment for Kansas City youth.
Wednesday, July 1 - Mindy Walker
Since moving to Kansas City, Mindy has been a tireless volunteer and champion of science. Mindy was awarded an Environmental Excellence award from Bridging the Gap for her commitment to programs such as teaching children at the Discover Center and introducing young girls to science with the Expanding Your Horizons program.
Thursday, July 2 - Dr. Bob Hill
As the senior minister of Community Christian Church for the past 22 years, Dr. Hill has worked to promote fairness, equality and the community by co-chairing the Metro Organization for Racial and Economic Equity group. In addition, he has served as a board member for Kansas City Hospice since 1998.
Friday, July 3 - Melvin Deiter
Exactly 65 years ago today, Melvin Deiter was shot while attending to a wounded marine during the Battle of Saipan in WWII. Because of his valiant act, the Navy Corpsman received a Purple Heart and Bronze Star. After the war, Deiter returned home where he just recently retired from farming at the age of 85.
Saturday, July 4 - Judge Jay Daugherty
Judge Jay Daugherty, joined by his family today, has been a long-time advocate and volunteer for the local chapter of the ALS Association. Since 1985, Judge Daugherty has been on the board of directors for the chapter while also serving as a trustee on the national board for more than 10 years. Judge Daugherty, who lost his father to the disease, was the first recipient of the George Brett ALS Volunteer of the Year Award, as well as chairman of the 1999 Community Celebration for Brett's induction into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
Sunday, July 5 - Cathy McKay
Cathy McKay has a long list when it comes to her community involvement, making her one of the most selfless individuals among her neighbors. The Trenton, Mo., resident is the president of the Wright Memorial Hospital Board, a past member of the R9 Board of Education, a representative on the MEC Credit Union board, an elder and teacher at Hodge Church and more.
Friday, July 17 - Kenny Clemens
Kenny Clemens, a retired volunteer firefighter and IBM employee, spends his summers on the baseball fields, working to make the Weston (Mo.) Sports Association a success. A long-time Weston, Mo., resident, Kenny cares for the maintenance on the field to keep them playable for the members of the community while also coaching four youth baseball teams.
Saturday, July 18 - Kelly Barth
Kelly Barth joins us to as part of the "Head for the K" festivities. The Des Moines, Iowa, resident is a dedicated Head for the Cure Foundation supporter and became actively involved with the organization after her Aunt Lisa was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor. Since then Kelly has spent countless hours supporting Lisa's family and volunteering at various Head for the Cure events.
Sunday, July 19 - Jim McPherson
This year, Jim McPherson is retiring as a member of the Mid-Continent Public Library Board of Trustees, a position he has held in his community since 1991. A great advocate for literacy, the Weston, Mo., resident served as the board's president and was crucial to the library's major construction projects and growth.
Tuesday, July 21 - Janell Smith Carson
In 1964, Janell Smith Carson represented the United States as an Olympian in the 400-meter run. Gracing the cover of Sports Illustrated in 1965, the Parsons, Kan., resident, who just recently retired after 35 years of teaching first grade, will be inducted into the Kansas Sports Hall of Fame this fall for her achievements in sports.
Wednesday, July 22 - Lisa Rush
Four years ago, Lisa Rush from Kansas City, Mo., created the annual A Chance for Children 5K Walk/Run benefitting KU Medical Center's pediatric programs. Behind Lisa's leadership, this year's event, scheduled for Aug. 22, benefits the C6 Program at KU Med, a program that educates others on the treatment and needs of children with terminal illnesses.
Friday, July 24 - Tony Stutey
Tony Stutey first became a volunteer with Big Brother Big Sisters in 1974. During that time, the Wichita, Kan., resident has had four matches, mentoring young men who needed a father figure. Tony, who was named Big Brother of the Year for his chapter in 2004, is a member of the Big League volunteer group and is an active participant in the organization's main bowling fundraiser each year.
Saturday, July 25 - Kenny Smith
Kenny Smith has been a police officer and a member of the honor guard for 10 years, receiving several awards and honors for the selfless work he does. In addition to police work, the St. Joseph, Mo., resident volunteers with the Special Olympics, Camp Quality, Ronald McDonald House and Children's Mercy Hospital.
Sunday, July 26 - Steve Oldfield
Along with his wife, Linda, Steve Oldfield works hard to publish The Adrian Journal and The Drexel Star, weekly newspapers in his community. The Adrian, Mo., resident is a pillar of his community, lending a helping hand as a school board member, a newspaper publisher as well as a member of the local Lions Club.
Tuesday, August 4 - Marla Brassfield
Marla Brassfield has worked with inner-city Hispanic children at Bethany Community Center every Thursday night for the past 15 years. Two years ago, the Overland Park, Kan., resident retired from 26 years of home day care to take mission work on full-time with the In His Service Ministries, a non-profit business serving inner-city communities.
Wednesday, August 5 - Jerry Gibson
Jerry Gibson started his 25-year involvement by coaching intercity baseball in Swope Park in 1965. The Kansas City, Mo., resident then began organizing groups of friends to build baseball diamonds and bleachers, becoming a driving force behind several inner-city sports-related initiatives in our community.
Thursday, August 6 - Julie Brock
Julie Brock, who has a life-threatening disease, was eligible for one wish from the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Missouri. Instead of having it granted for herself, the remarkable 12-year-old from Kansas City, Mo., chose instead to donate the monetary equivalent of her wish to a local Kansas City food pantry.
Friday, August 7 - George Toma
Legendary groundskeeper George Toma, who retired from the Chiefs in 1991 and the Royals in 1997, is one of the most in-demand experts in his industry. The Westwood, Kan., resident and Korean War veteran just celebrated his 80th birthday this past year and continues to work tirelessly in his profession. He has been responsible for preparing the field for all 43 Super Bowl games and now shares his knowledge through turf clinics, college classes and educating youth baseball managers.
Saturday, August 8 - Sgt. Dan Carney
In 1988, Sgt. Dan Carney gave a stranded stranger $8 for gas money and, 21 years later, he received the $8 in the mail with an apology for the delay in repayment. The Overland Park police officer was so touched by the effort of the stranger that he was inspired to start the Give 8, Ask 8 effort to raise money for the City Union Mission, asking citizens to donate $8 while also asking eight friends to do the same. It is fitting Sgt. Carney is honored in the Buck O'Neil Legacy Seat on August 8.
Sunday, August 9 - Sgt. Dale Jinkens
Last November, Sgt. Dale Jinkens made a routine traffic stop that turned into a life-saving moment for three citizens. The Lee's Summit, Mo., officer witnessed a two-vehicle traffic crash that led him to immediately respond to the scene, described as "a wall of flames." Because of his quick thinking, Sgt. Jinkens was able to help pull three people to safety. This past May, he received the 2009 State Employee of the Month after from Missouri Governor Jay Nixon.
Friday, August 21 - Joe Jennings
Joe Jennings has a spirit for life that rivals Buck O'Neil. The Kansas City, Kan., resident owns and operates J-14 Enterprises, a farm and ranch that is part of the Community Supported Agriculture Coalition. Jennings, who celebrates his 81st birthday next month, has been farming for 40 years, started his CSA in 1998 and also hosts the Youth Volunteer Corp for annual work days.
Saturday, August 22 - Maranatha Academy Girls' Relay Team
Allison Bailey, Bethany Zarda, Mallory Keith and Christa Courtney
The Maranatha Academy Girls' Relay Team technically won the Class 2A girls' 4x800 relay at the Kansas State High School Track and Field Championships in Wichita, but showed that there's more to sports than winning or losing when they gave their medals to the team from St. Mary's-Colgan. The Maranatha Academy team from Shawnee, Kan., was initially awarded the state champion medals after the Colgan team was disqualified when a team member collapsed during part of the run.
Sunday, August 23 - Diane Yeamans
Diane Yeamans has done the little things to help her community, serving as PTA president as well as president of the Franklin County Historical Society. The Lawrence, Kan., resident has also worked closely with Habitat for Humanity and a local soup kitchen.
Monday, August 24 - Cullen Jones
2008 Olympic gold medalist swimmer Cullen Jones is the first African-American male to hold a world record in swimming, currently holding the record in the 50 meter freestyle. The Raleigh, N.C., resident has teamed up with USA Swimming Foundation's "Make a Splash" program, to promote swimming lessons in order to help reduce drowning instances among minority youth. Jones is currently in Kansas City as part of a six-city tour with the program.
Tuesday, August 25 - David Welsh
After losing both his wife and his mother to ovarian cancer in 2006, David Welsh founded The Vicki Welsh Fund to fight ovarian cancer by promoting greater awareness of the disease and its symptoms. The Blue Springs, Mo., resident works to promote the annual Whisper Walk for Ovarian Cancer Awareness and serves as an auctioneer for charity events to help raise funds.
Wednesday, August 26 - Dr. Toni Diehl
Dr. Toni Diehl is a physician volunteer at the Turner House Children's Clinic, a clinic he helped to start in order to better serve uninsured and underserved children in our community. The Lenexa, Kan., resident also volunteers for Habitat for Humanity and travels to the Dominican Republic twice a year for medical missions.
Friday, September 4 - Rev. Don Coleman
Rev. Don Coleman is the president and founder of the Lincoln, Neb., chapter of M.A.D. DADS, a group that strives to reduce gang violence and illegal drugs in the community. Behind Coleman's leadership, the Lincoln chapter collects, fixes and repairs bikes to donate to youth in the community.
Saturday, September 5 - Maria Chaurand
Maria Chaurand is the founder and director of El Grupo Atotonilco, a Mexican folkloric dance group that is celebrating its 30th anniversary and has trained more than 700 youth. Maria has also served on the Hispanic Heritage Committee, Hispanic Development Fund, Mexican American Women's National Association and more.
Sunday, September 6 - Sam Gould
Sam Gould has been around the Kansas City sports scene for more than 55 years as the owner of Sam's Parking Lots at old Municipal Stadium and the original operator of the Kauffman Stadium parking lots. Recently turning 92, Sam, along with Buck O'Neil, participated in the unveiling of a dedicatory marker at the site of Municipal Stadium.
Monday, September 7 - Karl Morris
Karl Morris is the founder and first executive director of Concerned Care, Inc., an organization that provides independent living for 115 adults with developmental disabilities while also serving 500 youth and adults through services programs. The Gladstone, Mo., resident led the organization and its growth for more than 30 years.
Tuesday, September 8 - Billie Bock
Billie Bock was the first female manager at the 3&2 Baseball Club in Johnson County, coaching boys' youth teams throughout the 1970s and 1980s. The Lenexa, Kan., resident had an interest in baseball from early on and even was a player in the All-American Girls' Professional Baseball League.
Wednesday, September 9 - SuEllen Fried
In 1974, SuEllen Fried stepped up to start the Kansas Committee for the Prevention of Child Abuse, helping to prevent child abuse and neglect in the state. The Shawnee, Kan., resident is also a lifetime member of the Prevent Child Abuse America Board and has served on numerous related committees.
Thursday, September 10 - Al Cerne
At 17 years old, Al Cerne enlisted as a WWII paratrooper, surviving D-Day in Normandy and the Crossing of the Rhine. Now 83, the Olathe, Kan., resident was later wounded in Munster, Germany, before getting awarded the Purple Heart for his courageous efforts.
Monday, September 21 - Louis Beck
In the 1960s, Louis Beck went door to door pushing fair housing for minorities, a stance that grew into the Kansas City, Mo., resident fighting for equal employment opportunities for most of his life. The 82-year-old also worked at an inner city job program for minorities and helped to develop the first home health care program for Eastern Kansas rural communities.
Tuesday, September 22 - Jim Thomas
Jim Thomas has been the head coach of the Papillion-La Vista, Neb., baseball team for 36 years, building one of the most successful and well respected programs in the state. Overall, the 61-year-old coach and retired teacher has coached in more than 2,680 games and impacted hundreds of young baseball players.
Wednesday, September 23 - Velma Bowman
Velma Bowman has devoted her time and talents to helping adults with developmental disabilities through her leadership of the Good Shepherd Manor Guild. Under Velma's leadership, the Guild provides financial and emotional support to the men and women of Community of The Good Shepherd.
Thursday, September 24 - Regan Getman
Regan Getman, an Independence, Mo., first grader, represents the American Heart Association as a survivor of heart disease. Born with a transposition of the great artery, Regan had surgery at Children's Mercy Hospital to help battle her congenital heart defect. Now, the healthy 7-year-old, who is joined tonight by her mom Jill, participates in dance and Girl Scouts. Today, as we host Girls' Night Out to benefit the American Heart Association, we recognize Regan and all those who fight heart disease by joining the Go Red For Women movement.
Friday, September 25 - Bob Motley
The only living Negro Baseball Leagues umpire, Bob Motley began umpiring in 1948 and has used his love for the game to help found the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum and preserve an important era of baseball. Umpiring greats such as Satchel Paige, Hilton Smith, Willie Mays, Goose Tatum, Ernie Banks, Hank Aaron, Joe Black and Buck O'Neil, Mr. Motley received multiple nominations for this honor, including from 11-year-old Danielle Wiles.
Saturday, September 26 - Jack Morrell
A recent recipient of the Dale Wilson Umpire Award, Jack Morrell has been umpiring baseball for more than 40 years. The Iola, Kan., resident and full-time teacher has also worked as a basketball referee and a basketball, football and track coach for a combined 82 seasons.
Sunday, September 27 - Teri Gillespie
Teri Gillespie is a recognizable smile at Kauffman Stadium, greeting fans up in Section 421 with a huge smile, a warm welcome and a "Go Royals." This season, the Royals have received numerous letters raving about Teri's "above and beyond" attitude and the Royals treatment she gives to everyone she meets. She truly exhibits a love of the Royals, Kauffman Stadium and the fans and staff who fill it.