The Aggies' game on Sunday, Aug. 28 will raise money for the families of fallen Dallas police officers, affected by the shooting on July 7.
TISHOMINGO — Sheena Martin has a cousin who is an officer in Burleson, Texas.
Julia Villalobos, a native of Hurst, Texas, has a family friend who serves as a police officer. He was supposed to go to Dallas on July 7, she said, but stayed home to address a family matter.
Moreover, Raelyn Jordan has maternal family members who are police officers in the Odessa, Texas, area.
Sunday, the Murray State College women’s soccer team will play to support police officers involved in the shooting on July 7 in Dallas. Murray State coach Cortney Wiesler organized the occasion to support them.
Sunday’s match will start at 2 p.m. It has a special meaning for the Aggies, who will host Brookhaven College at Regional Park in a contest benefiting the Dallas Fallen Officers Foundation.
“It was really hard (to process), knowing it happened so close to home,” Villalobos said of last month’s shooting. It’s sad for those families that their (family members) were doing what they were supposed to be doing” when snipers opened fire during a peaceful protest. “I’m just really praying for all those families, though, because that’s hard.”
Said Jordan, “It means a lot,” being able to play this match. “We feel honored, as a team, that we’re able to bring the community together to raise money for these families and these fallen officers. You do hear about this on the news. It doesn’t occur to you that it can happen close to home. It’s happened. It’s so surreal, almost. Again, we feel honored. I really hope it makes a dent and I hope that everyone sees what we’re doing and I hope that it keeps it going.”
Tishomingo’s proximity to Dallas stirred Wiesler’s desire to act.
“I started watching videos of interviews with the families, the funeral processions and cops interviewing their fellow cops,” Wiesler said, adding it had a profound and solemn impact on her. “I want to do something. My first thought was trying to get a game organized to where we can raise as much money as possible and give back.”
Thus, donations will be accepted. During the match, special wristbands and shirts will be available for sale. Wiesler worked with the DFOF President, Sergeant Demetrick Pennie, to ensure that all the money raised will go directly to families of officers who lost their lives on July 7.
“Since we’re here in Tishomingo, we’re about two hours from Dallas, so it kind of hits close to home,” Martin, the team captain said. “Especially when a lot of these girls are from Texas and they live in the Dallas/Fort Worth area.
“It’s a huge honor to be able to play and make money that we can send to the fallen officers and their families.”
Interested parties can bid on the Aggies’ game-worn jerseys at www.32auctions.com/MSC_UnitedWeStand from Aug. 29 – Sept. 12.