Central community hosting softball tournament for teacher with c - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Central community hosting softball tournament for teacher with cancer


The halls of Central Elementary have emptied out for the summer but the love of students has filled the home of one 4th grade math teacher.

"She believes in touching the heart of the children before she ever starts to teach that child, all the students love her," said Anita Byrd, Math Instruction Coach, Central Elementary.

For 15 years Candi Procell has taught children at Central but just a month ago Procell was diagnosed with cervical cancer.

 "Just unbelievable I think I was in shock for a long time," said Procell.

In order to help Procell and her family with medical expenses, parents and students from the past and present are hosting a softball tournament in her honor.

"One person found out and they told someone and I have people praying for me all over," said Procell.

Anita Byrd has worked with Procell for about seven years and says Procell has impacted so many lives now those students are just returning the favor.

 "Watching Candi go through this experience has been very touching because our community has pulled together," said Byrd.

Procell says since her diagnosis the outpouring of love and giving hasn't stopped and says she's thankful to be a part of the Central family.

 "They've just taken me in and treated me like one of their own and its unbelievable," said Procell.

Procell will start radiation treatment on Monday and Byrd says the entire community is behind her.

 "You can't explain it but that's how God's love is, that's what she's being shown right now through people in our community," said Byrd.

Procell hopes to use her diagnosis as encouragement to anyone in a similar situation.

 "Don't give up, just remember that he's right there with you and people when they say they want to help I believe they really do," said Procell.

The tournament will start Saturday at 9 a.m. at the Central Youth Athletic Complex, the last game is set to start at 4:30 p.m.

There will also be a silent auction and a dunk booth.

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