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Softball team beats cancer with a bat

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Oldham holds fund-raiser for cancer research

By Jason Stamm

A silent killer became outed more on March 10.

According to the American Cancer Society, one in four deaths in the U.S. are caused by cancer.

In an effort to bring more attention to the deadly disease, the Oldham County High School softball team held the second Beat Cancer With a Bat series Saturday.

OCHS, Owen County and Carroll County each played two scrimmages in a three-scrimmage series, with concession and ticket sales benefitting the National Foundation for Cancer Research.

Each player and coach wore pink t-shirts during the game, while two banners hung on the back of the Lady Colonels' dugout honoring survivors and those who lost their battle with cancer.

Lady Colonels Coach Steve Leanhart started the event last season, his first as OCHS coach.

His father, Steve Leanhart, died in 1997 of lung cancer, while his mother, Pat First, is a uterine cancer survivor.

"Anything we can donate to the cause will help," Leanhart said. "Besides, it just inspires all of us."

First signed her name on the survivor banner.

She said she became diagnosed in 1972 and underwent five years of treatments.

"You just have to have a positive attitude," she said. "I just knew I was gonna make it. I put it in the lord's hands and everything turned out fine."

Cancer also affected La Grange's Darrell Reinbold, whose daughter, Elizabeth Reinbold, is a junior right fielder for OCHS.

Darrell Reinbold's father, Paul Reinbold, passed away in 1995 from leukemia, while his brother-in-law, Danny Maddox, passed away in July from abdominal cancer.

The cousin of Darrell Reinbold's wife also died from breast cancer.

Darrell said he's glad to see anything that raises cancer awareness.

"It's something out there that needs to be fought," he said. "Hopefully we can come up with a cure, but it's good that people are out there who will support the battle."

First said she hopes more people can have the same outcome.

"I feel so blessed," she said. "I'm just glad people do this because I'm so lucky to be here."

Email us about this story at: sports@oldhamera.com.