GLEN ROSE, Ark. – The community of Glen Rose is in mourning after their beloved softball coach of many years, Brett Haley, passed away in December.
Brett Haley was the long time Beaver Softball Coach, and bled red for his Beavers despite being from a few miles up the road in Benton. Former players of his told us he was more than just a coach – he was family.
“There were times that I was broke down on the side of the road and he dropped everything he could to be there, help me, and fix my tire for me” former player, Aubrey Jackson, said.
Coach Haley had a tough go with several health complications, ultimately passing away from medical issues on December 28th. He left behind many who loved him, and many concerned on what “next” looked like for them.
“He wore a lot of hats, and was very important to our community” Monty Whitley, current head-coach for softball, and worked alongside Haley for many years, said.
A scrimmage was held in his honor and memory. A heartfelt thing about the scrimmage is that all the players were current, or former players of Coach Haley’s.
Stepping on the field brought back a lot of memories for the players, most memories down memory lane involving their beloved coach.
“I constantly always hear him in my head telling me, hey, you can do better than that” Jackson said.
The players smiled through their tears, and lit lanterns in his honor – releasing them as the scrimmage concluded. They sent him off to rest from his favorite spot, where he spent many hours investing his time in his players.
Jackson said, “We weren’t just softball players, we were kids, his kids.”
Coach Haley’s kids said he wouldn’t believe they did all of this just for him.
“I knew he’d get a kick out of it – he’d be over here cracking up” Hallie Rogers, a former player, said.
Many told us that people were scared of Coach Haley at first – they quickly mentioned that there was no reason to be scared at all.
Rogers said, “I would consider him family, and every person that has met him, and gotten to know him – they would consider him family, too.”