GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — With the sports world grinding to a halt, two sports writers in Michigan are doing their part to make live better for others.
“When I went to bed on Thursday night last week, I was praying for my freelance writers and broadcaster and videographers and photographers,” Larry Lage said.
Lage is a Michigan sports editor for the Associated Press. He’s a fixture at all the big sporting events in the state and is a champion for journalists who’ve lost work because of the shutdown.
“So, I prayed, went to bed, woke up and I was still thinking about it. In fact, I was crying and I said “I want to do something,” Lage said.
So, Lage started a Facebook fundraiser. Word spread and so far, he’s raised over $10,000. Every penny of that will be given away.
“Even if someone doesn’t give a dollar to my fundraiser or share my fundraiser, I hope they think about ways they can help their neighbor or strangers around the world, while staying safe,” he said.
Just like Lage, Emily Waldon, a baseball writer for The Athletic, felt a call to help. Her cause is the Minor League Baseball players she writes about, many of whom struggle to pay bills, even when they’re getting paid.
“And they’re making about 15 hundred bucks. They are making either at or below the nationally recognized poverty line,” Waldon said.
That’s what a typical undrafted player on the Whitecaps makes.
So, Waldon made a plea to her Twitter followers, and within a week, she’s raised over $8,000.
“I am floored. You see so much negativity on Twitter. This has been the absolute opposite of that. I’ve had people, repeatedly messaging. If I don’t respond right away, they’re like, I want to help, I want to help, I want to help,” Waldon said.