CHICAGO (CBS) — It was a situation that horrified youth league baseball fans Wednesday night in Monee: A coach from Beecher collapsed during a game and later died.
CBS 2’s Pamela Jones talked with the family of 43-year-old Brian Jones.
“He’s a fun-loving guy, and he’s going to be sorely missed by everybody,” Jones’ wife, Bobbie, said. “He always tried to do the right thing and have fun and the kids he loved.”
Brian Jones was doing what he loved, coaching the Beecher Hot Rods, when he suddenly got sick Wednesday night.
“I asked him what’s going on, and then he said, ‘I’m going to pass out.’ And he fell over on top of me,” Bobbie Jones said.
The family says several minutes before it happened a fan was heckling Jones. But loved ones and witnesses call it an unfortunate coincidence.
“I don’t think it got very heated at all,” said Willkan baseball coach Mark Schultz.
Jones’ son, Ryan, was on the field when his dad fell to the ground. He says he’ll always remember his dad’s lessons on baseball and life.
“Don’t wind up when you’re throwing it to first base — and just have fun,” Ryan said.
As the family prepares to say goodbye, they’re trying to remember the good times.
“Good guy,” said Jones’ brother, Scott Jones. “It’s just a shame.”
Brian Jones continues to give, even in death. He was an organ donor who was able to give four organs, his wife, Bobbie, said.
The Cook County Medical Examiner’s office says Jones died of cardiovascular disease. His wife says she didn’t know about the illness.
She says her husband was so committed to his family and his team, he even changed jobs so he could spend more time with them.
In lieu of flowers, the family is asking that any donations be sent to a fund to help with their son’s education:
Brian Jones Memorial Fund
First National Bank of Grant Park
951 Dixie Highway
P.O. Box 490
Beecher, IL 60401