Bridgeton youth baseball team pay tribute to teen injured in boating accident

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BRIDGETON, MO, (KPLR)-Teammates of an 11-year-old St. Charles County boy who was severely injured in a boating accident over the Memorial Day weekend, paid him a special tribute Wednesday.

The Bridgeton Giants honored Ashton Yates by signing a baseball and hanging his jersey in the dugout.

"It's just heartbreaking, it should not happen to a little kid, to a child," said Ashton's coach, Bruce Shipman.

Shipman said that Ashton is one of his best players on the team.

"He's been a spark, he plays every position we ask him to play and up until the accident, he came in with a smile on his face for practices and games and never complained," he said.

Ashton's teammates, including his twin brother Aiden wanted to let him know that he is still and always will be a part of the team.

"He's going to be pretty happy," said Aiden, "it's just hard sometimes with him not out here."

Aiden said that he and Ashton are really close and fondly recalled how they interact with one another when on the field.

"We are way more competitive," he said chuckling, "we're like 'Get the ball!'"

Also present were both grandmothers who said that it felt strange not seeing Ashton out in the field.

"When it was registering to him, his eyes just filled up with tears," said Pam Yates, "and he said, 'Am I going to get to play baseball again?' and I said, 'Yeah of course you will.' "

Shipman said that the team will carry Ashton's jersey for the rest of the season.

There is also a GoFundMe account set up to help with Ashton's medical bills.