Many kids attending after-school programs at the Reed Community Foundation have dreams of being a professional athlete.
Ten-year-old John D. Morrison IV wants to be a professional boxer. He’s been training at the community center to be the next Muhammad Ali since he was 4 years old.
Coach Keith Reed, the founder, instilled a love of boxing in the young man, often working weekends to get John ready for upcoming matches.
That’s just one of the many young lives Coach Reed has touched. He has a special connection with kids, many of whom came from single-parent families and were headed down the wrong path.
Single mom, Jamie Goudeau, was working full time, and she says she was worried and exhausted.
Her 5-year-old son, Roderick, was having trouble in school, so she reached out to Coach Reed.
The coach picked Roderick up after school and got him interested and engaged in learning.
“I know the Lord works through him,” Goudeau said.
Another parent, John D. Morrison III, says the coach, “Wants to teach them how to be disciplined, wants to give them structure. He also understands that all of them might not become that superstar athlete, so why not be a superstar in the classroom.”
In the coming months, the RCF will move into a larger building to have space to serve even more kids in North Tulsa. NewsChannel 8 and our partners at ORU wanted to give the coach some essential items to help further his mission.
We wanted to surprise the coach, so we kept the real reason under wraps. Coach just thought anchor Neile Jones wanted to do an interview about moving to the new building. He never saw what was coming one surprise after another.
ORU provided two, 58-inch TVs for the new lab for math and science.
Then Coach Paul Mills, who led the ORU Eagles to the Sweet 16, stepped from behind the NewsChannel 8 satellite truck to reveal his gifts.
“Because of your leadership, your faith, your investment in so many people, we are happy to donate basketballs and sporting equipment for all that you do for so many people,” Mills said.
Cheers went up from the kids gathered round to witness the moment.
“That’s not all! We have more for you today,” Neile said.
Then Dr. Charles Scott, ORU executive director of Church and Educational Partnerships, stepped up with a big check.
“We want to join you in a symbol of hope and offer you a $1,000 scholarship to a student to be named,” he said.
Coach Reed was moved to say, “Awe I feel so good! I want to cry but I will keep it right here! Love lives here! Thank you so much.”
Neile exclaimed, “Coach Reed, you are our unsung hero!”