LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A Louisville kid with big league dreams came back to town last weekend to help kids who have some of the biggest struggles imaginable.
Los Angeles Dodgers catcher Will Smith just finished his rookie season, but USA Today is already saying he could be the best catcher in baseball. The former Kentucky Country Day and University of Louisville star said he couldn't have scripted it better.
"It was a fun year," he said. "A great rookie season. It's truly a dream come true."
But far away from the roaring crowds, Smith wants to use his baseball fame to help others here in his hometown. He didn't just donate a jersey for charity. He also signed it in person at the Louisville Marriott East during a fundraiser for Barren Heights Retreat.
The group provides free weekend retreats at their site by Barren River Lake for families of children with developmental and physical disabilities. Host families provide love and support for those families, encouragement that often carries on for years with other Barren Heights events.
Many of those families and volunteers attended the gala last weekend, including friends of Smith, who said he has a desire to help kids in need.
"I think it's one of the things about me that shows I just wanna give back and help kids," he said. "And this is a great cause that I can help do that."
Baseball provides Smith with the opportunity to help kids who won't be able to realize the dreams their parents had for them.
"It just gives me that stage to get here and kind of help raise more money for this cause," he said.
It's a cause that will bring Smith back to his roots no matter his success far away in Los Angeles.
"Louisville is home for me," he said. "I was raised here, grew up here, went to school here. Yeah, I like to come back. I love it here."
Smith hopes Louisville residents help Barren Heights Retreat by volunteering.
Families with children facing physical or developmental disabilities can reach out to Barren Heights Retreat by CLICKING HERE.
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