LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The University of Louisville baseball team is mourning the loss of one of their biggest fans.
The team posted on its condolences on its Twitter page to Todd Esser. The 46-year-old and his motorized wheelchair was a constant presence for the team. He showed up daily to practices and games over the past ten years. And he was there cheering on the Cards in June during their tournament run, when WDRB's Mike Lacett brought his story to our viewers.
The team's tweet said, "It is with great sadness we say goodbye to our beloved friend Todd Esser, who passed away last night. We already miss you Todd! #L1C4"
Esser's father Fritz told WDRB News that Todd was found dead in his chair pinned up against the kitchen table. He believes the chair malfunctioned and that Todd may have suffocated or died of a heart attack from the shock.
Esser had cerebral palsy, but it didn't keep him from being in the middle Coach Dan McDonnell's team meetings or batting practice for his beloved players.
“It wasn’t like we looked at him and felt sorry for him,” McDonnell said. "It was like; this guy really loves us and spends a lot of time supporting us. So that’s how the friendship grew."
The funeral will be held at 10 a.m. Tuesday at St. Rita's Church on Preston Highway. The U of L baseball team donated a full uniform that Todd will be buried in.
"He lived life to the fullest," Fritz Esser said. "I'm just so glad we made it to Omaha this year together."
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