Bryan Kramer, Minot
A few weeks ago the Bishop Ryan girls fastpitch softball team competed in the state tournament in Fargo. During their stay in Fargo, they visited Scheels where WDAY was doing the "Christopher Gabriel" show live. Mr. Gabriel asked some of the girls to be on his show to talk about softball, and more importantly, the 2011 flood and its aftermath. Following the show, Mr. Gabriel sent us the following email. I have gotten permission from Mr. Gabriel to submit this email and have provided his phone information. Further, the live show from Friday was followed by another segment on this topic on Monday.
"I'm a talk radio host here in Fargo. My program offers current events, pop culture, sports and lots of humor - clever, not bathroom. Today, we were out on a live remote broadcast at Scheels. During the early part of the program, I noticed several young ladies watching the broadcast...then a few more...and a few more after that. It was clear they were together and a part of some sort of team. Turns out it was your girls softball team, here in town for the state tourney. I waved hello and invited all of them over to get hats, t-shirts...pretty much whatever we had left in our big box of goodies.
When I asked where they were from, I heard Minot. Hearing that, I immediately asked several of them (the first two I noticed when they walked over) if they'd join me on the air to discuss the semifinals and, more importantly, how all of them and Minot were doing after last year's awful floods.
The young ladies who joined me were Anika Rovig and Sydney Marmon. Please forgive spelling errors. They both were incredibly poised, personable and charming. To the latter, I mean they came across on the air with "voices that smiled." Anika had told me off air during a break that her family had been evacuated so when I moved the discussion to the flooding, she told me what it felt like and then got quite emotional. As a father of two girls, my heart just felt so much for her in that moment...she tried to stay composed but the tears overwhelmed her. I kept gently patting her shoulder while steering the conversation to Sydney. Once Anika felt better, I went back to the games and she jumped right back into the flow. Both Anika and Sydney impressed our audience a great deal. The comments came flowing into our live chat room on WDAY.com.
Within those moments chatting with Anika and Sydney, several things struck me as pretty remarkable. Things I have no doubt speak to both your community and, even more so, your school...
When all of their friends and teammates, so giddy and joyful moments earlier, saw what was happening with Anika.....they fell silent. Their eyes and body language just poured out support for Anika. It was a beautiful, stunning (in a good way) thing to see. We can be so jaded about young people and yet forget that there are so many out there who are simply great kids. There was no doubt in my mind, nor in the minds of my colleagues from WDAY who witnessed the moment, that these young ladies Anika, Sydney and all of their teammates "get it." The bond they so clearly exhibited, en masse, was unlike what I'm used to seeing (most of my life, and time around young people has been spent in NYC, Chicago, Los Angeles, Philadelphia and Minneapolis). Also, while Anika was trying hard to work through her tears, Sydney kept one eye on Anika to see if she was OK while continuing to speak with me...and not missing a beat.
I just wanted you to know how utterly impressed I was with all of these young ladies especially Anika and Sydney. It really was one of those "you had to be here" moments. And had you been here, you'd have been quite proud of them. How they represented themselves, Bishop Ryan and Minot.
Finally, they may be playing Fargo North but...I'm from Chicago and have no agenda: Go LIONS!