STILWELL, Kan. — Blue Valley High School athletes and classmates remembered Reat Underwood Tuesday night on the baseball diamond. Many were still in shock after their friend was gunned down in the parking lot of the Jewish Community Center on Sunday, April 13.
The order of the day at Blue Valley High school was to wear white.
All students and staff were asked to wear white to remember Reat Underwood, and most did. Even some other schools sent pictures to Blue Valley High School showing their support in wearing white. (See one picture below.) So at Tuesday’s softball and baseball games, the tribute to Reat’s memory continued by softball players sporting white bows, fans wearing white and white balloons being released.
Both games had a moment of silence in memory of Reat, his grandfather, William Corporon, and Terri LaManno all killed Sunday in what police call hate crimes.
Today was the first official day back to school for Reat’s classmates. They say his memory and the memory of what happened was felt everywhere.
“It was complete silence. I think there was a peacefulness throughout the halls,” said teacher Azie Taghizadeh.
“There was a lot of tears and sadness, but we all consoled each other and just lots of hugs, and then the happy memories started coming back,” said student Mackenzie Smith.
Tuesday night’s memorial at the games was put on by a leadership class and staff members. They were planning to have a tailgate for the baseball and softball games, but when Sunday’s tragedy happened, they decided to make Reat the focus of the evening.
There’s a Facebook page urging the Royals to use Reat’s recorded rendition of the National Anthem. To find out more, click here.
Below, Shawnee Mission West students take a group photo in a show of support for Blue Valley High School and in honor of Reat Underwood.