But he couldn't find it. There was no headstone or even a grave marker for Jimmie Crutchfield. He laid in an unmarked grave. One of the most famous people to come out of Ardmore MO was in an unmarked grave.
Dr. Krock created a fund to place markers on the graves of all the greats from the Negro Leagues. He started with Jimmie Crutchfield's and so far the fund has placed grave markers on 20 graves. The fund is called the Negro League Grave Marker Project.
Not that it matters, or should..but Dr. Krock is a white man. He has taught his two young sons to respect people of color and their accomplishments as well. He has taught them the history of the Negro Leagues, and those that paved the way for greats like Willie Mays, Ricky Henderson and so many others. A quote from one of his sons, a very wise 16 year old named Spencer:
"Everyone should be treated equally, and they really weren't back then," said Spencer Krock, 16. "In some cases, there were Negro League players that had more talent than some in the major leagues. I think it's important to recognize that everyone has potential."
It made my day to read that quote from a child. I am sicker than hell, but it made me feel a whole lot better. To read the entire ESPN piece on Dr. Krock and his fund check out this Outside The Lines story. It will make you feel good, I swear it will. For once, I ain't bitching..so it must be worth the trip to that link. To learn more about the Negro Leagues Baseball Grave Marker Project, check out their website here. If you can spare a few bucks for the cause, bless you.