The 13 teenagers that make up the Lufkin All-Stars got one more celebration before returning to normal life. Even in the celebration they urged people to think of those who were hurting from Hurricane Harvey.
The team met a large crowd at the George H. Henderson Expo Center who wanted to congratulate the team after they brought home the U.S. Championship from the Little League World Series last week in Williamsport, PA.
"It felt really special to see all these people here," Hunter Ditsworth said. "I didn't expect this many people but it is special."
Even with all the support, the players were still surprised about how many people came out.
"I thought it would be a little crowd," Mark Requena said. "It turns out there was a lot of people."
The players know people want to see them and the coaches, but they were surprised with everything going on in East Texas.
"I am surprised that Lufkin did this for us with everything going on with the Hurricane," pitcher Collin Ross said.
Despite getting attention, the players are wanting attention to go to the people suffering. The team teamed up with AAA to make special shirts. The shirts are being sold for $15 and all the proceeds will go back to the Salvation Army and their relief effort.
"I know people that have been effected by the hurricane," Kolby Kovar said. "Even if it not my family, the other people I may not know deserve the money because it was there homes and they got destroyed."
"My aunt and uncle live in Houston and their whole house is flooded," Charlie Deaton said. "They have a newborn and they saw his crib floating around in the house. That made me feel bad and I wanted to give back as well."
The players all say looking back, it will be hard to top the last two months.
"It has not sunk in," Shortstop Blake Slaga said. "It is getting close. I am starting to realize how big of a deal this is.
AAA said there are still special shirts left over.
The Lufkin All-Stars are not the only ones giving back. Several businesses and schools are giving back with a special shirt design with #Texas love.
The Lufkin and Central softball teams are having a competition. The two are trying to see who could sale more shirts. The losing coach will have to wear the other school's colors at campus on day. The shirts can be ordered through the two schools' softball programs or at Pro-Tees, Real Graphics, Sew Junkies or The Sign Shop.