Santa Monica, California. • Andrew Heaney, janitor of the Los Angeles Angels, invited members of a private memorial service to remember a gift Tyler Skaggs had given them.
of a story or even a picture that reminds you of all the good times you had with Ty, "said Heaney. "Take this memory and hold it in your heart and in your mind. That is his lasting gift to all here. "
Skaggs' teammates and family gathered Monday in a Catholic church in his hometown of Santa Monica to remember Skaggs, who was found dead in his Texas hotel room on July 1
The mourners remembered Skaggs as a beloved son, husband, teammate, and friend whose optimistic personality made everyone around him happy. The altar was flanked by two large red and white flower arrangements bearing the Skaggs uniform number 45.
Hundreds of participants laughed and cried over the eulogies of 14 speakers. Several family members told of Skaggs as a precocious, happy child who had accidentally grown into a world-class athlete.
"For Tyler's parents and family, it was an incredible job to raise such a wonderful person," said Padres pitcher Garrett Richards, a longtime team-mate drafted by the Angels in 2009 along with Skaggs. "Carli, your husband, had a big smile, but an even bigger heart. He really cared about people. It is a great honor for me to spend as much time with him as I have. He has influenced me in so many areas of my life. Rest in peace, Skaggy.
The last speaker was Carli Skaggs, the pitcher who had decided at the last minute to share poignant memories of her life since her wedding last winter.
"I did not think I would do it," said Carli Skaggs. "Tyler has given me strength."
The current Angels and owner Arte Moreno were joined by former team members, including longtime manager Mike Scioscia, Jered Weaver, Richard Richards, David Freese and Matt Shoemaker. These included Ryan Brown from the Milwaukee Brewers, Jack Flaherty from the St. Louis Cardinals, and former Major Leaguer Trevor Plouffe, all of Los Angeles' natives and friends of Skaggs.
The Angels players and other members of the organization made the short drive from Anaheim in three buses. Skaggs grew up as a fan of angels instead of the narrower Dodgers.
"He was a sincere and caring person," said Heaney. "His friendship is something I will always remember and cherish, he was the best friend you could ask for."
The Angels wore # 1 jersey in their first home game after his death on July 12 .45 by Skaggs, scoring a 13-0 win over the Seattle Mariners.
After the service, the mourners were hauled by a catering truck owned by In-N-Out Burger, an institution in Southern California, and one by Skaggs. # 39; Favorite Courses Welcomed.
On that day, the Tyler Skaggs Baseball Foundation's Major League Baseball Players Trust donated $ 45,000 to support youth sports, projects, and family services after completing the lab test.