What began as just a simple, supportive idea is now a stateline phenomenon.
In recent days, we brought you the story of Freeport volunteers collecting softballs to support the troops. On Saturday, the pyramid was complete with more than 1,000 collected, and with 30,000 signatures. Each of the balls will be shipped out to an individual soldier protecting our freedoms around the world.
Gold star mom Carol Petsche, whose son Neil died in Iraq, and injured Army soldier Ryan Hubbard were guests of honor at the event. Organizers say the softball drive is proof that the area is proud of their soldiers' dedication.
"Would you sign a softball? It's something so simple, everybody will sign a softball, and what we've gotten is just incredible, from schools to clubs to organizations, they've been awesome. I'm just thankful and blessed," Mike Brinkmeier said.
The softballs will be packed up this Wednesday and Thursday. The balls should be in the air and on the way to the troops next Saturday.