July 9, 2011 by staff
Nolan Ryan, For now, the story is well known: A father reaches over the railing at a Texas Rangers baseball game to catch a ball to fall to his death while his son watched. Shannon Stone, a fan of 39 years, Rangers, was trying to catch a foul ball in the game released to him by Rangers All-Star Josh Hamilton, when he fell overboard in left field. Stone, who was at the game with his 6-year-old son, fell 20 feet and landed on his head. He was transferred to the Office of Tarrant County Medical Examiner, where he later died.
The game went as planned, with players, coaches and most fans know that Stone, a firefighter from a nearby suburb of Dallas, died while his son shouted at his father.
Hamilton, who threw the ball to Stone, said he is still dealing with the aftermath of the night, saying he could hear the child screaming for her father after his fall. Hamilton said he remembers the fall, “as happened in slow motion,” said Forbes.
Great pitching, Nolan Ryan, now president of the Texas Rangers, said the tragedy “hits us in our roots of who we are.”
“We are on the verge of remembrance, family entertainment,” he said. “I certainly understand – and I’m no different than our fan base – when I was young and went to the stadium, my hope was to get a foul ball.
“You can see how many people come into our stadium wearing gloves, just hoping to have that opportunity,” said Ryan. “That’s just part of the experience of being here.”
The mother of Shannon Stone, Suzanne, agreed.
“That’s what they were there for was to catch a ball,” he said. “Cooper loves baseball and is a big fan of Josh Hamilton. If your shirt.”
Players were given the option of getting emotional support services Friday, and the two teams – the Rangers were (and are) playing the Oakland Athletics – plan to use black tape on their uniforms. And the Rangers Ballpark, flags flew at half-mast.
A moment of silence was planned before the Rangers and the Athletics played the second of its four-game series.
But now attention has focused on the child who had to watch his father die.
Jenny Stone, the victim’s 36-year-old widow, said he worried how your child recover from the horror of not only seeing his father fall, but riding in the front of the ambulance on the way to hospital.
“She is very worried about her son and the impact it has on him,” said Ryan, who spoke with her by phone. “She asked if I could do anything about the video being shown.” Reps have continually shown the child saw his father get to the ball, and falling through a gap of several feet between the seats in left field. At the request of the Stone family, MLB.com has posted video of the accident.
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