FOX Sports will be heading out to Germany this week to take part in “Spring Training to the Troops,” as past and present major leaguers, announcers and FOX Sports West girls from each region will visit U.S. Army Garrison Grafenwoehr from Feb. 5-7.
Activities will include the MPs and 172nd Infantry Brigade playing a Wiffle Ball game – with current and former players and the FOX Sports Girls on both teams – morning physical training and meals with the troops, combat simulations, youth baseball clinics for children of troops and visits to the Wounded Warrior Center and schools on base.
In attendance will be FOX Sports West’s Tim Salmon, FOX Sports West Girl Asha, and Hall of Famers Wade Boggs and Rollie Fingers, current players Heath Bell (Diamondbacks) and Luke Gregerson (Padres), ex-player Brian Schneider, former player/coach and announcer Bob Brenly, Orestes Destrade (FOX Sports Florida), Mario Impemba (FOX Sports Detroit), Jack Ensch, the director of military affairs for the Diamondbacks.
We caught up with FOX Sports West Girl Asha to get her thoughts on the upcoming trip.
FSW: Why are you looking forward to this trip?
Asha: This trip to Grafenwoehr is really a special way of thanking the men and women who have dedicated their service to protecting our country. I’m looking forward to this trip because it’s an opportunity for me to show my appreciation, and I’m honored to be part of the group traveling to Grafenwoehr.
FSW: What do you hope to get out of this trip?
Asha: I hope to come back ripped from PT exercises 🙂 jk. I’m hoping to gain insight into what it’s like on the life of a US soldier which will give me a greater appreciation for the military. I’m excited to share my experience with our fans, I’m anticipating this trip to Grafenwoehr to be nothing short of amazing.
FSW: What does the military mean to you?
Asha: I don’t have any brothers, but my first cousins are both male and growing up they were just like brothers to my sister and I. We spent all of our summers in Maryland with them so we’re very close. Both of my cousins served in the U.S. Armed Forces. One served in the Marines, the other in the Army Reserves. My Pop Pop (Grandpa) fought in World War II which is another reason this trip is so cool because he was stationed in Germany.
FSW: What is your personal connection to the military?
Asha: Unfortunately, I don’t have personal stories that I can share about my family’s experience serving in the military. It’s a brotherhood and if you’re not a part of it then it’s not really discussed with you; less is more. But, my Pop Pop has always been like superman to me; I loved him dearly and when I found out he fought in WWII my admiration only increased. I looked up to him and I’m a girl so it only makes sense that my cousins wanted to follow similar paths which I think is part of the reason they both joined the Armed Forces. But, when I saw my oldest cousin in his uniform after he enlisted in the Marines I just remember crying, a lot that day. I was very scared for him and at the time my only exposure to the military was through movies so I didn’t want him to enlist. But, I remember my mom telling me that my cousin was dedicating his life to something greater than himself and that was a good thing. My Pop Pop told me that my cousin was a man and that’s what men do and that he would be fine. That was comforting for me and my sadness turned to pride. Since then I’ve been grateful and very proud that my family members have helped to keep our country safe.
Oh and when I was in college my oldest cousin used to pick me up on weekends and we’d hang out, he’d take me grocery shopping, etc. I remember telling him about my boy problems once and it was like the Marine came out of him. One moment he was jovial the next he was like listen I’m a Marine if any man is giving you trouble I can handle it. I was tickled and I promptly told the guy in question that my cousin was a Marine and could definitely beat him up lol. It was awesome!
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