By Sam Tilles
While many Cubs hurried home for Thanksgiving break on Wednesday, Nov. 23, the junior varsity and varsity baseball teams were busy at work at the West Los Angeles Veterans Association Medical Center.
After leaving campus early, 51 junior varsity and varsity baseball players along with guidance counselor Daryl Crowley, varsity head coach Sean Buller and assistant coach Michael Barnhill volunteered for Westside Thanksgiving, an organization that provides veterans and those in need with not only food, but a friendly community on Thanksgiving Day.
The Cubs’ main responsibility was to set up the event before the Thanksgiving Day celebration. Under the leadership of Crowley, who has volunteered at the event with her family for over 20 years, the baseball players unloaded and moved roughly 80 tables and 240 chairs into position.
“The real fun came after the labor,” said junior pitcher Connor Ladwig. After their work and during downtime, Cubs were able to chat and play board games with veterans who rely on Westside Thanksgiving for a place to spend the holidays.
Barnhill said, “The manual labor part was of great help, but I know the boys felt most impactful when interacting with those they were serving.” This was the first time the baseball program has participated in an event of this kind.
Ladwig said, “The fact that the whole baseball organization came together to do something like this was really cool. To get away from the baseball field and weightlifting and training to take a break and do community service was really refreshing. I definitely want this to become a tradition.”