SWINGING FOR THE FENCES
WC student demonstrates generosity in the face of extreme adversity
When Worthington Christian ninth-grader Jameson Colley was diagnosed with leukemia in December of 2019, one of the first questions he asked his parents and oncologist was, “When can I play sports again?”
Jameson holds a particular love for the game of baseball, which started as a tiny tee ballplayer. He joined a traveling baseball team at age eight where he played until the unexpected diagnosis came in the middle of his seventh-grade year. Since then, Jameson has undergone many rounds of difficult, painful treatment and infusions, frequent hospitalizations, isolation from others due to having a comprised immune system, schooling from home, and limited (or no) ability to be involved in sports. Though his involvement was limited, his love for the game—along with the support of his family, friends, and church and school communities—has carried him through these unimaginable difficulties.
Jameson has made sure to support his traveling and school teammates from the bench at every possible practice and game he has physically been capable of attending. Last year, he was able to return to in-person learning and start playing again as his strength and immune system allowed, with the protective help of a custom-made vest to shield the port implanted in his chest for treatments. In the midst of this progress, Jameson suffered a serious setback; he began to experience neurological damage as a side effect from his treatments that caused extreme discomfort in his feet. This setback was so severe that he had to start taking a new medication to combat the side effects and begin physical therapy. He explains, “I basically had to learn to walk again.”
Now in his first year of high school and nearing the end of his years-long treatment regimen, Jameson will get to play as this baseball season gets underway. And he is starting his high school baseball career in an especially memorable way.
Early in his treatment, Jameson and his family were connected with the nationally-known “Make-A-Wish Foundation,” a non-profit organization that grants “wishes” to children with critical illnesses. Coming from an outdoorsy family, Jameson’s dream “wish” was a trip out west with his family. As a result of COVID restrictions, the Make A Wish Foundation limited their “wish-granting” to local options only. Jameson came up with another “wish” –one to share with his beloved school community and school baseball program: on-campus batting cages.
So in the weeks leading up to this year’s baseball season, the Make A Wish Foundation has been busy orchestrating the construction of custom batting cages aside WC’s Mike Penn Baseball Field. This has involved preparing the ground, pouring large slabs of concrete, setting posts, placing nets, and laying turf atop the concrete slab.
To celebrate Jameson’s generosity, Worthington Christian School will host a short ceremony at the newly-constructed batting cages in the coming days. The entire WC community is invited to attend: this will be a special moment you will not want to miss. It is not common for wish recipients to make the choice to gift their wishes to others. Struck by Jameson’s generosity, Make A Wish representatives will be in attendance for the presentation ceremony. Katie Ferrell, Director of Marketing and Communications for Make-A-Wish Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana, shares, “We are so inspired by Jameson’s heartfelt wish to give back to his school. When a wish comes true, it helps spark joy and create hope for children and their families. Thanks to his selfless gift, the entire community will get to experience the power of a wish, and Worthington Christian students will benefit for years to come!”
Jameson explains part of the inspiration for his selfless wish, “As I thought about my ‘wish,’ I realized that a trip would be a one-time sort of thing, and I thought it would be special to gift my wish to benefit others on an on-going basis over the course of time.”
Make plans to share in this moment on Wednesday, April 13, at 4:00 P.M. at the Mike Penn Baseball Field (before the varsity baseball home game)!