Commentary

Katie and the Mariners

Updated: June 27, 2008, 6:24 PM ET
By Frank Morris | Katie Morris' father

Editor's note: The subject of one of the "My Wish" pieces on SportsCenter in 2006, Katie Morris of Powell Butte, Oregon, died the morning of Wednesday, April 25th. This "My Wish" piece, voiced by Chris Connelly, chronicled Katie, as a 12-year-old, spending a day with the Seattle Mariners at Safeco Field with her ex-teammates from a youth baseball team from Oregon City, Ore. Morris, the only female player on the team, was diagnosed with a brain tumor shortly after her family moved from Oregon City to Powell Butte.

Awesome and amazing. Those are the two words that describe Katie's visit with the Seattle Mariners. I know a lot of people were surprised that she included her little league team in her wish, but that's just Katie. She's incredibly unselfish, likes to share everything and is a total team player. If she sees you need something she wants to help. There was no way she wasn't going to include them in this special moment after bonding with them for four years on and off the field.

She's a huge Mariners fan and it was proven when she walked onto the field for the first time and bent over and kissed the ground. It was a movie like moment and it showed how much passion she has for this team. Going into this day, my wife and I knew how much it meant to her to go to the park and meet the players, but that drove it home for us.

Ben Vanhouten/ESPNKatie Morris with Jamie Moyer.
As great as that moment was though and as great as it was to see her eyes light up when she met great players like Ichiro, the best moment of the entire day was watching her when her best friend, who unbeknownst to her was there, was called onto the field for the team picture. She hadn't seen him for several years because he moved down south and when he came running out from centerfield she ran as fast as she could crying the whole to hug him. Watching them hug and cry in the middle of the Seattle Mariners field broke me down.

I knew my daughter loved the Mariners and I knew she loved her teammates, but watching her reactions to everything and watching her cry in pure joy was simply wonderful. This Make A Wish wasn't just a dream come true for my daughter, but it was a dream come true for my wife and I as well. I don't think people realize just how important this program is because it's not just about the child's wish, but also about the family. That entire day we didn't have to worry about anything, we knew Katie was going to be alright and was going to have a great time and she did. I have to thank the Make A Wish program for helping to make this day possible.

Make-A-WishIf you want to know more about the Make-A-Wish Foundation or donate to the cause click here.