By Alvin Richardson
As part of the Lady Dogs Softball Alumni Weekend. the school and community members as well as players from the past 20 years came together to honor former Morgan County High School student and Lady Dog softball player Brittany Smith who lost her life this past year. In a moving ceremony the school and team announced several ways that Brittany will be remembered and offered up some first-hand accounts of what she had meant to both her school, teammates and community members.
Seated in a place of honor, Brittany’s parents Robbie and Mary Smith, her brother Nathan Smith and her grandfather Thomas “Peepaw” Stewart were informed of the following:
1) In the left field corner of the field near the archway at the entrance is a tree donated by Jack’s Creek Farms and a granite bench provided by Elite Stone Solutions and etched by Everlasting Granite. These have been permanently placed in remembrance of the contributions Brittany made to Morgan County High School, Morgan County softball and the community as a whole.
2) On the field a framed metallic jersey with Brittany’s number “5” has been donated and will be prominently placed in the softball complex as a part of a future project highlighting the history of Morgan County softball.
3) A special sign donated by the Lady Bulldog Softball Booster Club and this year’s Morgan County team simply stating “Live Like Britt” will hang in center field to remind players, coaches and fans to love the game, enjoy life and give 100 percent effort in everything they do.
4) Along these lines, Morgan County Athletics and Morgan County softball with approval of Brittany’s parents have chosen not to retire jersey number “5” but to allow Brittany’s legacy to carry on in the following manner: Beginning with the 2017 season the softball coaching staff will select a player each season who exemplifies qualities and characteristics in line with Brittany’s legacy of maximum daily effort, heart of service, team first attitude, positive encouragement of others and dedication to team. From this season forward wearing jersey number “5”will hold a higher meaning than a simple number on the back. It indicates a legacy left behind by an extraordinary Lady Dog and an outstanding person. Wearing jersey number “5” will be an honor and privilege for a Morgan County softball player as it will demonstrate a legacy worthy of replication.
After these pronouncements were made Brittany’s family was brought to the home plate area and presented with Brittany’s jersey encased in a frame as another remembrance of her. This was also given to honor Brittany’s career as a Lady Dog softball player and the legacy she leaves for all present and future players.