ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. Her pitch bounced twice before rolling softly into a glove near home plate, a moment that began a reunion. Alayna Adams, 9, walked toward the batters box with a casual pace before a voice over Tropicana Fields public-address system gave an introduction to remember.
Catching todays ceremonial first pitch, fresh back from Afghanistan, please welcome Lt. Col. Will Adams!
The father had removed his catchers mask by fresh, and Alayna began a sprint toward his arms a short moment later. The crowds roar grew more full with each second. Soon, there were images that showed the bond between father and child, the power of presence and renewed love: A giant hug at home plate; Will lifting Alayna into his arms; Wills wife, Dana, jogging from the mound after a meeting that became a surreal surprise.
The house is not clean yet! Dana said in a corridor shortly after the family walked off the field.
USO and the Tampa Bay Rays helped make the memory possible Thursday night, ...