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AUSTIN, In. (WDRB) --Jayce Stallings was only three-years-old, but had already made such a mark on his family and community. At practice, with his mom's basketball team, at the baseball diamond, and on vacation with his family.
"He was so fun-loving. He was just perfect," Jayce's Aunt, Stephany Hazelwood, said.
Life for that perfect little boy took a tragic twist during one of those vacations last July. Right after he finished tubing on Patoka Lake, he was cold and shivering. His family let him take his life-jacket off, like so many would, so that he could warm up on his grandma's lap.
"She looked away because someone was talking, and that's how quick it happened," Hazelwood said.
Jayce was gone.
"We couldn't find him anywhere," Hazelwood explained.
Everyone did everything they could to find him. Finally, emergency workers got to him in the lake, and rushed to try and save his life.
"They took him right to Harrison County, they worked on him for four hours, they did all they could. Then, they weren't successful," Hazelwood said.
The family was devastated.
"What could we have done? Why didn't we save him?" Jayce's other aunt, Andrea Lee, asked.
It has all lead them up to this point.
"We never want his memory to die. We never want people to forget about him."
So, they're getting their bats, forming their teams, and hitting up Austin City Park and Scottsburg Beechwood Park for a softball tournament.
"Turn a negative into a positive, and hope that everyone has a good time,"Jayce's grandfather, DeWayne White, said.
All of the money raised next Saturday and Sunday will go to the "Jayce Ray Stallings Memorial Scholarship." One of four senior basketball players, coached by Jayce's mom, will be awarded the scholarship. It's something that would mean the world to each of them.
"Yes, it's a privilege because it's money that's going to help pay for our future, but it also gives Jayce an opportunity to be in our future in a way because it's all for him," senior, Megan Smith said.
The tournament is October 5th and 6th. The cost is $175 per team. Donations are also welcome and will benefit the scholarship.
For more information, call DeWayne White: (812) 416-2860