PANAMA CITY -- A former professional fast-pitch softball player is in town this week, motivating local school students.
Charity Butler, who now calls the Panhandle her home, stopped by Merritt Brown Middle School this afternoon to share her story. Butler's primary message is encouraging teens to make positive choices.
Butler is familiar with teamwork and positive motivation. She used to be a player on the National Fast Pitch Softball team.
She now travels the country with Sports World, talking to young people about purpose and positive choices.
"We talk about passion and having things that we're excited about and work hard toward. And perspective: Learning what it is to grow and see some things differently maybe and purpose. Like these kids realizing that they have a purpose there is a reason that they're here," Butler said.
Merritt Brown School administrators have been planning for Butler's appearance since last summer, calling it a great opportunity to encourage students about their future.
"They're at a point especially the eighth graders where they're having to make a decision of what they want to do in high school and where they want to go in their life," administrative assistant Judy Fyre said. "So knowing that they have a hand; it's not who your parents are, it's not what you are. It's how hard you're willing to work to do something."
The students couldn't agree more,
"We're the ones that make our choices and what we do today can affect what happens in our life tomorrow and the rest of our life," student Maddie Chester said.
Butler is happy to play a role, especially in her home.
"It's an honor to get to speak here close to home and to finally start getting plugged into the community,” Butler said.
Butler travels with the Sports World Tour every other week. Her next trip is March 31.