Baseball team brings holiday cheer to young burn patients

12.10.2014 | By Rob Vanya

The San Jacinto College baseball team recently went to Shriners Hospital to visit with patients. Pictured, from left, visiting with 9-year old Lyzania, were: Tyler Newcomb, Kyneil Walwyn (mascot), Brett Wright, Austin Homan, Jorge Fernandez, Max Wood, and Seth Mullis. Photo credit: Dustin T. Johnson, public relations specialist, Shriners Hospital for Children Galveston.


San Jacinto College players visit Shriners Hospital for Children in Galveston


The San Jacinto College baseball team recently visited young burn patients at the Shriners Hospital for Children Galveston to brighten their holidays with gifts and by interacting with patients and their relatives.

Angel Martinez, director of patient care services at the hospital, said the visit was especially meaningful because the holiday season can be hard for young patients and their relatives.

“The visit from the baseball team was a real treat,” Martinez commented. “It’s hard to be in a hospital no matter what age you are, and when a child is sick or injured, it affects the whole family. The visit from the team in particular brightened their whole day. It was wonderful to see the players interacting with family members, playing with the kids. Many of the families are far from home during the holidays, so it meant so much to have such a special visit. Everyone appreciated the time the team spent with our patients.”

Kory Koehler, San Jacinto College baseball assistant coach, said the visit was a win-win for both patients and students. “It’s a way to give back to the community, and at the same time show our student-athletes what life is like for some who face real difficulties,” Koehler said. “It’s good for the children to be able to forget for a while about the daily struggles they deal with, and it’s also a good thing for our students to spend some quality time with kids who have to deal with such challenges. We want our players to have well-rounded experiences, and see there’s a lot more to life than baseball and life on campus.”

Infielder Gabe Solis was thankful to be able to bring a little happiness to children in such need. “These kids really inspire me,” he remarked. “You really have no idea how much pain and suffering they live with until you visit with them and see them up close and personal. Here I am, able to play college baseball, and because of their injuries, many of them are not able to even go outside to play. They talked about how they wanted so bad to go outside to play. To see them smile in spite of their pain and everyday struggles, it just inspires me to fight and be determined and strive for success no matter what.”

The San Jacinto College baseball season gets under way on Jan. 30, 2015. For more information, please visit

About San Jacinto College

Surrounded by monuments of history, industries and maritime enterprises of today, and the space age of tomorrow, San Jacinto College has been serving the citizens of East Harris County, Texas, for more than 50 years. As an Achieving the Dream Leader College, San Jacinto College is committed to the goals and aspirations of a diverse population of approximately 30,000 credit students. The College offers 186 degrees and certificates, with 46 technical programs and a university transfer division. Students benefit from a support system that maps out a pathway for success, and job training programs that are renowned for meeting the needs of growing industries in the region. San Jacinto College graduates contribute nearly $690 million each year to the Texas workforce.

For more information about San Jacinto College, please call 281-998-6150, visit, or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.