XENIA — In order to turn a sad situation into a positive memory, family and friends of the late Joshua Rosell are doing something good in his honor.
The families are sponsoring the Josh Rosell Memorial Tournament on Monday, June 26 through Wednesday June 28 on the Evans Acres ball diamonds. The event doubles as the Xenia Youth Recreation Club G-Ball post-season tournament.
G-Ball League boys and girls are 7-8 years of age. Coaches pitch to their players, and the kids learn the actual rules of the game, and the score is kept.
“(Joshua) was one of the victims of the opioid epidemic that’s going around. It was a very sad situation,” said Shirley Murphy, Rosell’s grandmother. “That’s why we want to do this memorial. We want to be able to do something for him in his name.”
Special Josh Rosell Memorial trophies, designed by Rosell’s grandfather, Bill Mercer, will be presented at the tournament. Special event T-shirts were created by local business Just-Ink Tees. Prior to Monday’s opening day of the tournament at 5:30 p.m., family and friends will dedicate a specially made park bench to the Xenia YRC, which will be placed near the concession stand.
The bench was designed and built by Rob Rowland, with an inscription added by Rosell’s other grandfather, Marty Murphy. The memorial bench ceremony will take place at 5:30 p.m. at the ballpark.
Rosell graduated from Xenia High School in 2003. He died on March 13, 2016, just over two weeks before his 31st birthday.
“Josh was an outstanding ballplayer from T-Ball through High School. We decided the best way to honor Josh was to sponsor this G-Ball tournament in his name …, ” a memorial flyer reads.
Games are scheduled to start at 6 p.m. Monday through Wednesday. The Xenia YRC ball diamonds are located at the corner of S. Patton Street and Birch Road, in Xenia, behind the Bob Evans processing plant.
You can reach John Bombatch at 937-372-4444, Ext. 2123.