Pirates manager speaks of pride in Franklin Regional
In what he called a “love letter” to Franklin Regional seniors, Pittsburgh Pirates manager Clint Hurdle expressed pride for them and how they responded to a knife attack at their school.
“I'm so proud of every person in here, for every person that took a moment of action, that stepped forward, that made a difference, that sacrificed,” Hurdle said during a nondenominational baccalaureate service Thursday evening. “God's got this today, just as he did on April 9th.”
Hurdle's remarks, met with a standing ovation from about 500 seniors and their families in the high school auditorium, came on the eve of graduation. The Class of 2014 is set to don their caps and gowns on Friday to mark a celebratory end to an ordinary year that turned tumultuous in the spring. Diplomas will be presented to 306 students.
On April 9, sophomore Alex Hribal, 16, allegedly brought two 8-inch knives to the high school and began slashing wildly at classmates, injuring 20 students and a security guard. Classes at the school were canceled for a week after the attack in a first-floor hallway just after 7 a.m.
“I'm so proud, again, of the way we stood up,” Hurdle said. “It was you being strong, it was your kids being strong.”
“It's going to make a difference in everything you do for the rest of your life,” he said.
The student-driven service featured prayer, readings and musical performances from seniors.
Brad Henderson, director of Pittsburgh Kids Foundation, said high school graduations are taking place nationwide, but “none more significant than what's happening here.”
“God has been very much in the midst of what's been going on,” said Henderson, who serves as chaplain with the Pirates.
Senior Alex Pasculle wants to remember his relationships with teachers and friends.
“There's tons of positive stuff that happened this year,” Pasculle told the Tribune-Review last week.
Pasculle is an emergency medical technician who helped several injured students in the minutes after the attack. He hopes to attend nursing school in the fall.
“It's had a huge impact on me,” he said. “It just kind of put everything into perspective for me as far as ... none of us are invincible.”
Hurdle was asked to speak during Franklin Regional's baccalaureate by two Murrysville youth pastors. The Pittsburgh Pirates have responded following the attack by honoring first responders and the organization's charity has raised thousands of dollars to donate to a fund for victims and their families.
Hurdle used baseball metaphors and a tale from the movie “The Wizard of Oz” to elicit laughs and audience participation during his remarks. He encouraged seniors to engage in acts of kindness, make good choices and to take care of themselves.
“I'm here tonight, because you are important, you're very important,” Hurdle said.
“I can't wait to see the incredible things you do,” he said. “I can't wait to watch the lives you touch.”
Renatta Signorini is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-837-5374 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Walker: Applebees to help Jacobs Creek Area Faith in Action
- Westmoreland County, state AG to get funds from illegal lottery
- Fall fly-by: Blue Angels stop in Unity to discuss 2015 show
- Grease in Youngwood sewer system prompts another look at rule
- Jeannette man pleads guilty to attempting to entice child in Louisiana
- Man charged in New Stanton Sunoco robbery
- Woman sought in robbery in Unity
- 7 arrested in Latrobe-area drug dealing
- Builder finds calling as chaplain at Westmoreland jail
- Central Westmoreland Career and Technology students may have hand, foot and mouth disease
- Man taken to hospital from scene of Hempfield house fire