Youth baseball coach uses time in the U.S. Army as motivation to impact players

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“Yes sir” is an expression that echoes throughout every game and practice of the Broussard Diamondbacks. 

There are high expectations from head coach Hamilton Ledet. He expects high class and humility from every one of his 14-U baseball players. 

“I don’t care if we’re up 14-5 or 14-0,” Ledet says. “I don’t let my kids get up there and start hollering and throwing their gloves and getting complacent.”

It’s a coaching style Ledet mimics after his time in the Army and his childhood as a coach’s son. 

“You have to remain humble at all times and show class. That’s the way I construct my team and I will never change that,” Ledet says. “I’m no longer in the service, but I am a veteran for life. I’m not around many of my buddies and family from the military. I can’t reach out to every veteran. The ones that I do see, I speak with. This is my way of saying hey I’m doing my part.”

Besides techniques for coaching, Ledet brought home something else from his time in the service — post traumatic stress disorder. It’s a disease he says he doesn’t need medicine for anymore. 

Coaching is his medicine.

“I’ve seen some things in Iraq, and I’ve witnessed some things in Iraq that would probably damage someone but through my doctors and counselors and meds, I found peace,” Ledet says. “Ultimately, my calling was giving back and coaching these kids. That is my 100 percent therapy.”

No child of his own on the team and a torn achilles. However, Ledet doesn’t miss a minute of Diamondback baseball. 

It’s a level of dedication his players and their parents appreciate more than ever. 

“He’s like a second dad to me,” Diamondback first baseman Ezra Arceneaux says. “If I ever need to go talk to someone about something, I can go talk to coach.”

“I think it’s important to have coaches like him because he just cares about the kids,” Diamondback parents Ginny and Adam Hoover say. “He cares about the game and having fun and having a good time.”

Ledet wants to continue his tradition of impacting the next generation. He plans to run his own 14-U baseball league this summer. However, he doesn’t want his players to be just like him. 

He wants them to be even better. 

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Aaron Nolan is a morning show co-host in Little Rock, Arkansas with Nexstar Media Group's KARK-TV. He has a passion for social media and makes it an important part of his daily routine. Click here to read Aaron's full bio.

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