October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month at IMG Academy, and one sport that really took the matter to heart was baseball. Following the championship game of the Fall Invitational Tournament, held October 12-14, the IMG Academy baseball team honored Beverly Hawker, a long-time IMG Academy staffer and breast cancer survivor. The team dedicated the championship game to Hawker, and presented her with a bouquet of flowers and a baseball signed by all the team members.
âI got so emotional and started crying, and then they all took turns to sign the ball for me,â Hawker reminisced as she held back tears.
âThey all gave me hugs and my bouquet of flowers. I was very emotional and very proud that they would do so much to honor breast cancer awareness. I'm lucky to have the support of the kids and IMG Academyâ she continued.
Beverly is always smiling and seen around campus sporting her pink cap, emblazoned with the breast-cancer awareness ribbon, after
being diagnosed with cancer five years ago. She underwent a procedure to remove the cancer, and proceeded with chemotherapy as a precaution and to stave off a form of leukemia she was also diagnosed with. Nevertheless she soldiers on, undaunted, as she keeps up her fight. She continues to work at the school she loves so much, and cites her daily interaction with the student-athletes as a source of strength, and has grown quite attached to them.
They have undoubtedly grown quite attached to her, too.When asked where she keeps the signed baseball, Hawker said, âIt's the first thing and the last thing I see every day, right by my bedside and it'll never leave my possession - maybe my grandson will get it someday.â