'We believe in the power of prayer': Vigil held for Jessamine County baseball coach battling COVID-19

Posted at 8:07 PM, Dec 23, 2021

NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. (LEX 18) — This Christmas season, families in Jessamine County are praying for the ultimate gift: Baseball coach Erinn Thompson’s release from the hospital.

The East Jessamine High School head coach has been battling COVID-19, and family friends say he's not doing well.

On Thursday evening, players, coaches, and friends came together in prayer at East Jessamine High School. Dozens of people stood out in the cold, all of their minds on Coach Thompson. Friends tell LEX 18 Thompson has always been a family-oriented and even-keeled man, to whom people gravitate.

Players and coaches from East Jessamine High School and West Jessamine High School—normally rivals—took the field together Thursday night.

"We're rivals when we're on the field of play," said Chris Hawboldt, the principal of East Jessamine High School. "But ultimately we're all one community and we all work together."

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Following the lead of Chuck Ross, a family friend, they rounded the bases seven times, mirroring the biblical story of Jericho.

"I just want to tug on the end of God's garment and just pray for Erin Thompson to be healed," said Ross. "I just want to believe crazy for him tonight."

There was no talk of the circumstances behind his COVID-19 diagnosis. All of the focus was on the future.

"We believe in the power of prayer and the more people together, the more good work it can do," said Kelley Burczyk.

Thompson is only in his late 40s. His family wants him back home and his team wants him back on the field.

Although all those who attended recognized the seriousness of Thompson's state, they are holding onto their faith and hoping for a full recovery.

"Knowing him and the strong guy that he is," said Drew Farmer, a senior at EJHS. "I just know he's going to pull through."