The Stafford Municipal School District made history recently when the board of trustees voted 6-0 to name the district’s baseball field Michael Mesa Field.
Mesa was a Stafford MSD graduate who returned to his alma mater as a coach and Spanish teacher. He became one of the youngest varsity head baseball coaches in the state. Shortly after his second season as head coach, he passed away unexpectedly at age 26, in 2016.
“Michael was a valued member of the SMSD Community,” said SMSD Board Vice President Xavier Herrera, who spearheaded the board’s effort to name the field in Mesa’s honor. “Michael began serving as an example student and later as a teacher/coach who impacted a number of students’ lives in a positive way.”
Herrera is also the parent of a student-athlete who played for Mesa.
“I appreciate my board colleagues for unanimously approving the renaming of the field and all of the hard work done by the Mission4Mike board as well,” he said.
Mission4Mike is a non-profit organization started by Mesa’s friends and former SMSD classmates in an effort to keep his memory alive and positively impact others. Each year they host a charity softball tournament in Mesa’s honor.
“We started off as a group of peers trying to remember a classmate and along the way we turned into a board of trustees,” said Mission4Mike President/Co-Founder Gracie Martinez said. “Our organization was designed with purpose and to influence the lives of student athletes in honor of coach Michael Mesa, in honor of the way he was with young people and the way he loved that field. This is a huge achievement for our team and we’re so grateful for a community that believed in us.”
The Stafford MSD Athletic Department will dedicate Michael Mesa Field on Feb. 16.