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Beem pledges support in memory of eight-year-old boy killed by baseball

Rich Beem
(Photo by Darren Carroll/Getty Images)

July 30, 2013

By Doug Milne, PGA TOUR Staff

Dylan Williams

Two weeks ago, while in Ohio covering the LPGA’s Marathon Classic for the Golf Channel, Rich Beem was online catching up on the day’s news when he came across the story of an eight-year-old boy named Dylan Williams.

“This is not supposed to happen,” he remembers thinking.

But, it did. 

In fact, it happened so fast that Dylan never saw the ball coming and therefore likely never felt anything. That’s the extent of silver linings for his family.

On July 16, Dylan was covering first base at little league baseball practice in Union City, Ind. His coaching dad watched him from mere steps away. When a practice throw from a teammate struck the unsuspecting eight year-old in the back of the neck just below the head, Dylan fell to the ground.  He would never breathe on his own again.

Dylan was first rushed to a local hospital, then to Riley Hospital for Children 75 miles away in Indianapolis. With increasing complications from blunt force trauma and complete unresponsiveness, his family’s decision was to remove Dylan from life support on July 17. He died shortly thereafter.    

Countless results for internet searches about the tragedy lead to a single image of Dylan Williams hoisting a trophy in his Union City Stars baseball uniform, resplendent in smile and  character.

Along with his mother and father, Georgiana and Erick, Dylan is survived by a five year-old sister, Brianna, and 12-year-old brother, Derick.

“If love could save you, you would have lived forever.” – Unknown

The outpouring and love for Dylan has been steadfast and true. It has come from those who shared a home with him and those like Beem who know of him only as a victim of tragedy.

“I have an eight-year-old,” Beem said. “The thought of losing her is more than I could handle. I really cannot even imagine the pain that family is going through.”

Like many others across the country, Beem wants to do something to help. He started by reaching out to those at Pacesetter Bank in Union City who created the Dylan Williams Forever An All Star Foundation.

“As members of the PGA TOUR, we are incredibly fortunate to have this platform to see these efforts through,” he said. “The whole premise of the TOUR is giving back. That charitable nature is where its greatest success lies.”

At this week’s Reno-Tahoe Open, which plays under a Modified Stableford scoring format, Beem has pledged a donation to the Dylan Williams Forever An All Star Foundation based on the amount of points he accumulates over the course of the week.

 “Right now, the goal of the foundation is to raise money to get defibrillators at baseball fields everywhere,” Beem said. “Money raised would also be used to train coaches and parents in CPR.” Had an IED been in place at the Union City field, some doctors speculate, the outcome could have been very different.

“There is not a foot so small that it cannot leave an imprint on this world.” – Unknown

Editor's note: If you would like to join Rich Beem in making a contribution* in Dylan's memory, you may send a check to:

Dylan Williams Forever An All Star Foundation
c/o Pacesetter Bank
P.O. Box 427
Union City, Indiana 47390

*Contributions/gifts to this organization may not be tax deductible as a charitable contribution - please consult with your tax advisor.

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