Jim Adenhart walked out onto the empty field of Angels Stadium, and stood on the pitchers mound, where the night before his 22 year old son Nick made an impression to the Angels and to Major League Baseball. He gave up seven hits through six scoreless innings, and gave hope to a currently bleak pitching situation for the Angels who are trying to contend with three starters on the disabled list.
Jim flew to Anaheim from Baltimore after Nick told him he better be there to see it. It was just his fourth start and Nick knew that this was a real opportunity to cement himself into the rotation. But rather than celebrating the win with his son, Jim had to walk onto the empty stadium's pitching mound alone without his son who just hours before was involved in a fatal car accident. While standing on the mound he only covered his eyes briefly before walking back off the field.
Adenhart was a passenger in the car being driven by 20 year old Courtney Frances Stewart, a Cal State Fullerton student, when 22 year old Andrew Thomas Gallo ran a red light and blindsided them in a mini van. Stewart and another passenger, 25 year old Henry Nigel Pearson, were pronounced dead at the scene. Adenhart later died in surgery at University of California Irvine Medical Center. The other passenger in the car, 24 year old Jon Wilhite is listed in critical condition at the same hospital, but is expected to live.
Gallo fled the scene and was caught a half hour later. Police said that he was under the influence of alcohol, and had a suspended license due to a previous DUI arrest. Gallo faces three counts of murder, three counts of vehicular manslaughter, felony hit and run, and DUI.
Adenhart's agent Scott Boras who couldn't hold his tears back during a stadium news conference said, "His parents really want to communicate to everyone that it's a very difficult moment, but it's also a very special moment because Nick was most accomplished and his life's goal was to be a major league baseball player and he certainly achieved that standard." And while all we can do is offer our condolences and prayers to the Adenhart family during their unimaginable tough time, we have to respect their wish and realize that Nick is in the better of the two Angels uniforms now, and he's pitching to Hall Of Famers, like Roy Campanella and Bill Dickey up in Heaven.
Rest In Peace Nick Adenhart, Henry Nigel Pearson, Courtney Frances Stewart, and may God bless your families.
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