Making A Difference: Otis Seaberry - - Jackson, MS

Making A Difference: Otis Seaberry

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBt Source: WLBt
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
RALEIGH, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

A Raleigh, Mississippi, man sees football as a way to build leaders for tomorrow. Otis Seaberry saw a youth football game and had an idea to bring the league to Raleigh. He’s looking down the road to community leadership when he sees the youngsters line up on Saturday mornings.

Autumn Saturday mornings, you can hear the clash of the football games in the high school stadium in Raleigh. Only these youngsters aren’t high schoolers. No, the Raleigh members of the Mississippi Youth Football League, start out at 6-years-old, and stay with it until they go to Junior High.

There are over 60 teams in this league in south Mississippi. Otis Seaberry saw some youngsters playing in another town and thought that they could do this is Raleigh.

"If we don’t give our kids something to do I think that they are going to find things to do," said Seaberry, who serves as President of Raleigh Youth Football. "And the things they find to do, we’re not going to be pleased with them. We’ve learned to teach our kids sportsmanship and how to interact with other people. And we’ve had kids go on and play college football here. Some of them have got scholarships. We got a kid now playing up at Ole Miss who played in this league. Started out with about 40 players and we’re up in the 70s now with the kids. If the ones we found out that can’t afford to play, we get people around town to sponsor that kid. And we let them know that they’ve been sponsored by somebody. We let them know that somebody cares about them. We could say come one and play and never tell them, but I want to let them know that somebody is sponsoring you and they care about what you’re doing and care about what you’re growing up in the community. Cause you’re going to come back one day and run this community."

And as you can tell by now, these youngsters are learning a lot more than football in the Youth League. And not letting these kids raise themselves is an investment in the community, too.

"We really, really, really strive toward making those kids go to school, get an education and learn how to interact with other people," added Seaberry. "That’s very key. I don’t want to see any of them stray off."

I’ve heard people say about sports that it’s only a game. But when you take into consideration all of the implications of it, it’s way more than that. And when community members take it serious enough to take the time and patience to start ‘em out this young, what they learn are lessons that will Make A Difference in their lives and the life of their community.

We’re coming up on Thanksgiving, so why not say thank you to folks like Mister Seaberry who are Making A Difference for us. 

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