On February 23, 1999, country music star, Garth Brooks, had a life long dream brought to life as he stepped onto the field with the San Diego Padres to play professional baseball for a day.
Brooks did not decide to play professional baseball for the publicity or for money. He did it to raise money for the foundation he founded with professional athletes, Teach ‘Em All: Teammates for Kids. The organization was founded by Brooks and Bo Mitchell to help children in the areas of health, education, and inner-city outreach. The rule is to give 100 percent of the donations to benefit children all over the world by supplying them with everything from oral surgery to sporting equipment. Three time Super Bowl champion Troy Aikman is among the board members in the organization.
In high school, Brooks was a four sport all-star where he earned a scholarship to Oklahoma State, where he threw the javelin. He graduated with a degree in advertising. Even though he did not follow his dream of becoming a professional athlete, he was lucky enough to be granted with multiple chances to play with the pros. The Padres were joined by the Seattle Mariners, New York Mets and Kansas City Royals. Some of his baseball experiences only consisted of batting practice with the team when he was in town for a few concerts and others were fund raisers for his charity.
Related links: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/baseball/news/1999/02/12/padres_brooks/ (Sports Illustrated previews Brooks’ time with the Padres) http://www.planetgarth.com/news/article.php?cid=00261 (Brooks’ Baseball Retirement)
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