By Bob Uphues
Back in April, Phil Richards, chief financial officer for First National Bank of Brookfield, announced that the bank would award $250 to any Little League player whose homerun ball hit the centerfield scoreboard at Overholt Field in Kiwanis Park, and donate $250 to Brookfield Little League to boot.
And on July 7, LaGrange Park resident Aaron Buckholtz, 12, became the first player to do just that, launching a deep home run that hit the scoreboard during the opening game of the Little League World Series District 9 tournament.
Buckholtz's homer helped lead a team of LaGrange Park all-stars to a win over Riverside. The team would eventually make it to the district semifinals before being knocked out July 11 by Brookfield.
But there was a snag. As Richards explained to Buckholtz's mom, Jenna, Little League rules prevented the bank from paying players for hitting homers. Instead, First National Bank of Brookfield donated $250 to LaGrange Park Little League along with its $250 donation to Brookfield Little League.