Pump Jacks Rely on the Hospitality of East Texans

Pump Jacks Rely on the Hospitality of East Texans

KILGORE (KYTX) - College students from around the country come together every summer to represent East Texas. Players for the Kilgore-based Pump Jacks come to play ball without a home, food, or parental guidance. Pitcher Darren Lauer says one family was gracious enough to keep him for the summer. He is staying with a host family, and says they are vital to his success.   

"They make it a lot like living at home. Food,laundry, sometimes it is better than home." - Darren Lauer, Pitcher

Lauer depends on East Texans to help pursue his dream. Lauer is staying with Ken Hartley and his wife. The two take on everything Lauer's mom and father would.  "Sometimes they won't come in until 6 in the morning, and you gotta get up and provide them with a hot meal and a place to rest." - Ken Hartley, Host Parent

Even the Pump Jacks' coaches need host families. After hosting players for the last 4 years, Wolf Wheeler opened his doors to the coaches.  Wheeler says his family can spend an additional 250 bucks a month, and his own children have to get used to the couches.  

"As much as I can help a kid out, or a coach out that wants to give his time to do this. That's what we will do." - Wolf Wheeler, Host Parent

"They do a great job in making sure we are ready to go." - Darren Lauer

If you're interested in hosting baseball players, click here


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