WAYLAND, Mich. (WZZM) -- Members of the local media and Wayland Public Schools will take to the diamond Saturday to remember a friend -- and to help raise money for the American Heart Association.
The softball tournament, which will be held in Moline, will feature teams from WZZM 13, WOOD and WXMI, as well as Wayland schools.
The event began three years ago when tragedy hit the Wayland community. R.J. Steeby principal Patrick Coughlin awoke on Christmas morning in 2010, then collapsed after getting out of bed. It was later determined he died from cardiac arrest caused by an enlarged heart. Coughlin was 39.
"We went to high school together," says WZZM 13 photojournalist Ken Ritz, who organized the tournament. "I was in his wedding, and he was in my wedding.
"He was a principal at Wayland schools. That's why I included the Wayland teachers and coaches, because he was really well-loved in the school district," says Ritz. "When he died, it hurt the community pretty badly. I thought, why not have a fun night, have some fans come out and watch us play, watch all the celebrities play, and raise some money for a good cause."
Half of the proceeds will go to Coughlin's family -- he left behind a wife and four children. The other half of the proceeds will go to the American Heart Association.
The tournament begins at 6 p.m. Saturday at the Moline softball field behind old Moline Elementary School. The nearest cross streets are 144th and Division.
If you would like more information on how you can get involved, please contact the American Heart Association at (616) 482-1501.