She might be gone, but she hasn’t been forgotten.
Former North Platte Community College Knights softball player Siarra Velasquez has been getting plenty of reminders of her alma mater recently – in the form of motivational letters.
The Carter Lake, Iowa native is training at a boot camp at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri. She was part of the NPCC Knights Softball Team from 2012-14, and while many of the current team members have never met Velasquez, that hasn’t stopped them from showing support for one of their own.
“They’ve heard stories, and there are ties here and there,” said Higgins. “Our assistant coach, Rylee Murphy, was on the team at the same time as Siarra, and the family of one of our current players, Hallei Morales, was a host home while Siarra was here.”
Velasquez earned a master’s degree from William Penn University in Oskaloosa, Iowa in May. After spending the summer coaching softball in Iowa, she moved to Omaha and enlisted in the military. She left for boot camp the week of Thanksgiving.
“The team wanted to let her know we are thinking of her and supporting her new venture,” said Higgins. “Each member wrote a letter introducing herself and shared a fun story or inspirational quote. The goal is to send out seven letters a week for the duration of the camp.”
So far, 21 letters have been mailed. Another four bundles are ready.