BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - As baseball inches closer to debuting in Biloxi, the NAACP's Baseball Diversity Committee decided to host an event to remind the public of the first player to break major league baseball's color barrier.
"What Jackie Robinson did, even though it was 68 years ago, is still relevant today. About, you know, equal rights and about anybody having the opportunity if they have a dream, if they have an opportunity," said Gordon Jackson, who is the baseball diversity committee chairman.
Along with several youth members of the NAACP, Jackson made a history presentation on number 42. Despite having to attend the Biloxi Shuckers meet and greet, a few important names on the Shuckers management roster made an appearance.
"This was an important part of our agenda. To make sure we attended on this. To make sure that this chapter of baseball history is told," said Buck Rogers, who is the team's general manager.
The team's hitting coach also enjoyed the Jackie Robinson history lesson.
"It is highly significant for us baseball people, baseball players to understand where everything started, where everything comes from. So, we want to show the support for that," said Sandy Guerrero.
Following the presentation, several students and community leaders received the first ever Spirit of Jackie Robinson awards. One of those recipients was Maurice Williams, who is proud to announce his new title as Biloxi Shuckers bat boy.
"I think this is great. I think it will be a great opportunity for a lot of people in this part of town to get involved with something that they may not have if the NAACP had not have gotten involved," said Maurice.
April 15, is Jackie Robinson Day. It's an annual event in major league baseball, where players where Robinson's retired number, 42.