SAN FRANCISCO -- Raymond Beasley V, a fifth-grader from an East Bay suburb, has been named a grand prize winner in the 2014 Breaking Barriers: In Sports, In Life Essay Contest.
Beasley will be recognized Wednesday at AT&T Park before the Giants-Padres series finale. He and the other grand prize winner, Michael Andaloro of Phoenix, also will be honored by Sharon Robinson, daughter of baseball pioneer Jackie Robinson, and baseball Commissioner Bud Selig at the All-Star Game and during the World Series.
Beasley, who lives about 40 miles east of San Francisco in Brentwood, separated himself from approximately 19,000 other entrants by writing about his determination to overcome myriad issues he faced after several brain surgeries related to a tumor, while continuing to maintain that he has an "outstanding life."
In its 18th year, the Breaking Barriers essay contest asks students in grades four through nine to submit an essay describing their perseverance in overcoming barriers or obstacles they have faced or are still facing in their lives by using the values demonstrated by Jackie Robinson as he broke baseball's color barrier. These values are commitment, citizenship, courage, determination, excellence, justice, persistence, teamwork and integrity.
Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.