HAZEL GREEN, Ala. (WHNT) — There was a new twist to a rival softball game between Hazel Green High School and Grissom High School on Thursday night. The girls were facing off in a game, but they were also coming together in support of two very special young women.
Taylor Barry was diagnosed in October of 2012 with ALL Leukemia. She had just made the softball team at Grissom as a freshman. “It was really hard because when I first walked in and saw my coach I started crying,” said Barry. “I thought I was going to be kicked off the team, but he assured me that I wasn’t and that nothing was going to change.”
Elizabeth Gregg is a sophomore at Hazel Green High School. Gregg was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma in January 2013 and like Taylor, has been undergoing chemotherapy.
The two hadn’t met until Thursday night. Hazel Green and Grissom High faced off in a JV and Varsity softball game, and honored the two girls. Hazel Green’s team was dressed in lavender, the color of Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and Grissom sported special orange jerseys in honor of Taylor.
In between the games, lavender and orange balloons were released in honor of the two brave girls. Coco Tate Hughes is the softball coach at Hazel Green High and said it just seemed like the right thing to do.
“We usually do breast cancer awareness game every season but this year, an illness really hit home for us so it only made sense for us to honor Elizabeth,” said Hughes. “We heard about Taylor’s condition and some of the parents came up with the idea, we contacted Grissom and that was it, the plan was in place.”
“We wanted to do a balloon release for the girls because it’s just amazing to watch all the balloons fly away,” said Hughes. “That’s what we wanted for Taylor and Elizabeth, we want all of this illness to just fly away for them.”