Monday, July 21, 2008

Wilson is a 'Special Place'

Here's a feel-good item from Eric Simmons, whose son, Derek, is a member of the Wilson Tobs summer collegiate baseball team. I'm glad to hear of his wonderful experience and it serves as yet more proof the Wilson Tobs are so much a part of summer life in Wilson.

Thank you, Mr. Simmons!

This week my youngest son (Kevin) and I had the great opportunity to visit
Wilson, North Carolina. The experience was so moving, I wept before I left.

My oldest son (Derek) is a member of the Wilson Tobs. When he boarded his
flight from Atlanta to join the team, I didn't quite know what to expect.
Heretofore, he had never been in a "Host Family" environment as relates to
baseball. I worried about how he would handle this "new" situation in his
life. He was headed off to live with a new family in a new town with new
teammates, a new coach and playing in a new facility. Everything was "new".

When I met Derek's "Host Family" (Marc and Lisa Geeting), I knew right away
my son was in good hands. Upon meeting Tobs General Manager Ben Jones, Tobs
Head Coach Jeff Steele and various friends of the Geeting family, my
feelings about my son's well being were further substantiated. I came to
the conclusion Derek is amongst Special People and in a very Special Place.

Ben (Jones) took Kevin and I on a tour of North Carolina's "Baseball Hall of
Fame". Previously, I had no idea of the contributions your state has had
and continues to have in terms of baseball lore.

Fleming Stadium is incredible. Following a game this week, while looking
for Derek, Kevin and I found ourselves in the Tobs' locker room. It's hard
to describe but right away I knew my son and I were standing in a "Special

My hat's off to Marc and Lisa Geeting for being such great hosts to my son.
I tip my hat to the Tobs organization for their outstanding work. I applaud
the Wilson community for their support of aspiring professional baseball

I like the "Chicken Dance". I like the "Dizzy Bat Spin". I like the
"Tricycle Race". I like the "Frozen Shirt" contest. I really like, "Throw
the high stinky cheese!"

Of all of the things I like the most however is the people of Wilson, North
Carolina. You are "Special People" and you reside in a very "Special
Place". Thank you for so graciously embracing Derek and the Simmons family.


Eric Simmons

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