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How the Royals comforted a family struck by unthinkable tragedy

How the Royals comforted a family struck by unthinkable tragedy

Sometimes the most simple gestures can make the biggest difference. The Kansas City Royals recently proved that true again when they literally opened their clubhouse doors to a family reeling from an unspeakable tragedy.

Back on Aug. 7, Caleb Schwab, the 10-year-old son of Kansas lawmaker Scott Schwab, was killed in an accident on Schlitterbahn’s Verrückt water slide. It was a story that made national news. For the Schwab family though, it was the reality they were forced to live and fight through day-by-day.

About two weeks after the accident, Scott, his wife Michelle and their three surviving sons were still figuring out how to move forward. According to the Kansas City Star, they’d kept to themselves as they began the slow process of healing. That’s when the Royals reached out and invited them to attend a game at Kauffman Stadium. The family accepted, and what followed was an experience that helped restore hope that better days were ahead.

The up close and personal meeting with two of Kansas City’s best was just a small part of the Royals effort. The team also sent gift bags filled with batting gloves, bobbleheads and a stuffed doll in the likeness of their mascot Sluggerrr just before Caleb’s funeral. The Schwabs were appreciative of the gesture, but were officially overwhelmed when the clubhouse door opened and more Royals greeted them.

They were no cameras around that day. There were a lot of hugs though. There was also a lot of genuine emotion from a grieving family and a thoughtful organization that realized and embraced the simple role it could have in helping a family heal.

“I think about that day all the time,” Scott Schwab said of the meeting. “Any tears we shed that day, they were happy tears. Even missing Caleb. They were happy tears. We just wanted to go to a baseball game. They made it so special.”

There’s more to this heart-warming story, which we encourage you to read over at We’ll just add that our hats are off to the Royals, and our hearts go out to the Schwab family during this difficult time.

More MLB coverage from Yahoo Sports:

FOX MLB Analyst Alex Rodriguez joins Big League Stew’s Mike Oz to look through a pack of 1991 Donruss baseball cards.

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Mark Townsend is a writer for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!


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