2015 was a magical year in Kansas City. For the first time in 30 years, the Royals were crowned champions of the baseball world, rewarding a loyal fanbase with a thrilling season from start to finish. But as so many people learned last year, Kansas City, and the people that call it home, goes so much deeper than baseball.
So many different times last year, the Royals, their players, and their fans, showed how much they care about the Kansas City community. More specifically, the citizens of Royals Review have rallied together many times to show support for their fellow fans. When one of us hurts, we all hurt.
In June of 2015, Linda Ruder, 56, of Spring Hill, Kansas (about 20 miles south of Kansas City) was diagnosed with stage-four thyroid cancer. The diagnosis was devastating for Linda and her family, as her husband had to retire to tend to her. As a result, the family's income diminished to almost nothing, leaving countless questions about what to do for their three teenage children. With the Ruders being such a close family in my life, I, along with my best friend, cannot simply stand by and watch the people we love hurt in such a way so devastating that it impacts Mrs. Ruder, her family, and everyone else in their lives.
Sarah Davis (one of "Royals Twitter's" most recognized names) and I set out to bring relief to the Ruder family by hosting three fundraisers last year. I met Sarah on Twitter three years ago, and we've since become best friends based entirely on our mutual love for baseball. With both of us still in school, we're proud that we've raised over $2,500 in the last year, most of which has come from fellow Royals fans on Twitter. For our next event, we've planned something that we thought would be appealing to Royals fans.
On Saturday, May 28 at 10:00 am, Sarah and I will be hosting the Blue and Gold Charity Softball Game. She and I will be managing the two teams, and the game will take place on the softball field at MidAmerica Nazarene University in Olathe, Kansas. The interest in the event has been sharp, but we're still looking for a few people who would be interested in playing in the event. Even if you don't want to play, coming out and watching the game could help the family so much. For any interest in the softball game, you can post inquiries on the event's Facebook page here, or by contacting either Sarah or myself on Twitter.
Unlike some campaigns, Sarah and I are not looking to collect funds to cover outrageous medical expenses. This money will all be for the family to assist with everyday things, such as providing food for their 15-year-old son, gas to get Mrs. Ruder to her appointments, or helping two teenage girls buy books for school.
My ultimate question, to both Royals fans and to the people of Royals Review, is would you be able to help Sarah and I put on this event? We've started a Go Fund Me page to raise money for the family, as well as funds to be able to carry out this fundraiser. Even if you can't donate, just sharing this article on your Facebook or Twitter page could be a difference-maker for this wonderful family.
As a writer of Royals Review for two years, you guys have given me immeasurable support and encouragement that has taken my writing to the next level. I'm hoping now that together, we can all give relief to a family who's been pushed to the brink by this crippling illness, and now that Mrs. Ruder's health outlook begins to look more promising, the financial situation crumbles. Together, we can make a difference, and thanks to Sarah's creativity, we can have a lot of fun doing it as well.
Thank you so much, from the bottom of my heart, to each and every one of you. Your kindness is appreciated more than I will ever be able to put into words.