Hometown Heros Wear Pink to Support the Coach's Wife

By Melanie Chapman | mchapman@kolr10.com

Published 02/19 2014 09:04PM

Updated 02/20 2014 04:47AM

STRAFFORD, Mo. -- A boy’s basketball team is uniting behind the coach and his wife, who was diagnosed with breast cancer a few months ago.

Many teams wear pink for cancer awareness, but for this team it’s personal. The players are rallying in support of their coach and his wife.

The Strafford High School boy’s basketball team is top ranked in their district, but there's more to this team than talent. There's a lot of heart.

“They’ve been God-sent,” says Mike Wilson, head coach and athletic director. “They've went above and beyond everyday in practice for me and I have not had to push them a whole lot.”

Mike’s wife, Lori, is the Nixa Junior High School principal. She's also a cancer survivor who recently underwent a double mastectomy and, last week, had her final reconstructive surgery.

The players wanted to show their support.

“We were going to wear pink socks or something because when we see someone that strong effected by that we wanted to do something for him and his wife,” says Dalton Taylor, a junior.

Instead of socks, they bought breast cancer awareness tee- shirts from the school and personalized them.

“We put #4Lori on the back,” says Taylor.

Last week, during their half time warm up against Skyline, the boys surprised their coach when they came out in the shirts.

“I didn’t know and we get there and kids have all these pink shirts on,” says Wilson. “I’ve got a great bunch of kids and to show that kind of support it was really touching.”

The players will tell you, their coach is great. And he and his wife are people they look up to and admire.

Senior Jacob Wade lives with them and has become part of their family. They have shown him support.

“He’s been a father figure in my life every since I’ve been in high school,” says Wade. “He's a great guy he would do that for anybody, and Lori, she's really kept me in line. She's a really good woman and she's very, very tough.”

The players will have another pink-out at their final game this Friday.

Any student who buys the $10 tee-shirts will get into the game against Fair Grove on Friday for free.

As for Lori, she's already back to work and doing well.

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