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Major Larry J. Bauguess Memorial Field



new scoreboard signage

Keith Deveraux Dedicating The Memorial

A new scoreboard bearing Larry's name is erected
Keith Deveraux dedicating the Memorial
Pillar One
Pillar 2
Pillar One Representing Larry & His Life
Pillar Two Represents His Daughter Ryann
Pillar 3
Wesley Bauguess Speaking at Dedication Ceremony
Pillar Three Represents His Daughter Ellie
Larry's wife, Wesley, speaking at the dedication ceremony. "...the greatest gift you can do for their family is to remember their soldier." We will. Always.
Team Touching
Memorial with Field in Distance
Wilkes Central's Team Touches the Memorial Prior to their Game
Viewing of Proposed Memorial

Memorial Dedicated

The Major Larry J. Bauguess Jr. Memorial Committee unveiled the physical memorial near the entrance of the field on April 7th, 2012 during the West Wilkes High School home game at Wilkes Central. The structure, designed by committee members, shows a concrete circular foundation, with a gray granite base, and black granite pillars.

According to committee member Mandy Marxen, the design was carefully considered. "Every element has a meaning. The three towers rising up represents Larry and his two young daughters. The diamond shape that is revealed from the top of the towers represents not only the baseball diamond, but also his strength and beauty, a diamond."

The proposed site, ensures its visibility to all that come to the field. "We didn't want it to be off to the side or out of the way. At this location, it doesn't obscure the view, and can be seen by all that come through the gate. It reminds all that come to enjoy the games that this field is named for an honorable man," said Marxen.

The memorial is not solely dedicated to Major Bauguess, however. Any soldier killed in action that was also a WCHS student will be memorialized in the granite as well. "This is still a field that is part of an entire community. And we feel Larry would want to share the honor with his fellow troops," stated Marxen. These names are currently being researched and will be added at a later date.

The ceremony was attended by Larry's parents, his wife and two daughters, and countless friends and relatives that knew him. Every member of the Wilkes Central Baseball Team touched the memorial with respect prior to playing their game.


Baseball Field

Leveling Field sprigging
Laser leveling with sand on June 23rd, 2009
Grass "sprigging" on June 28th, 2009

Field Undergoes Major 2009 Renovation

The Major Larry J. Bauguess Jr. Memorial Baseball Field at Wilkes Central Senior High is currently undergoing major renovations. The turf project, valued at nearly $6,000, once complete, will make the field one of the best baseball surfaces in the area.

According to WCHS Varsity Baseball Coach Terry Johnson, improving the condition of the field was a priority to the safety and fair play of all the players that use the field. "The unevenness of the field caused bad hops and the brown spots looked horrible. But I worried most about players twisting an ankle or really hurting themselves out there," Johnson said. "I mean, it's not just high school kids out there, we have American Legion ball play on that field too. We just didn't want to see any kids hurt."

The field hadn't ever been professionally leveled, and after an irrigation project several years ago, even more low spots had been created. These low spots led to water pooling in wet weather, and brown spots from the sun burning those same wet spots in sunny weather. Under the advice of Mike Misell, the head turf specialist of Oakwoods Country Club, the outfield grass was killed, the entire field was laser-leveled, and GN1 hybrid Bermuda grass was planted in the outfield. The planting is called "sprigged" in the case of a running grass like Bermuda that doesn't grow from seeds, only "sprigs" of existing grass. Bermuda was already growing in the infield, but had never been sprigged in the outfield.

The GN1 (Greg Norman 1) Bermuda Grass is a special variety used on most turf fields that is known for its green color in an early season, heartiness, and ease of care. Says Mizell, "The low spots won't be a problem anymore. If any do appear, in the off-season we just lay down more sand and the Bermuda grows right over it. It's very easy and cost-effective to maintain once rooted." He explained that Bermuda grass is also kinder for the environment because it uses less water, less fertilizer, and far fewer pesticides than a traditional grass mix like the outfield had previously.

Mizell was also an advisor to the town of Wilkesboro's soccer field project that was also planting GN1 Bermuda grass; and by bundling the two orders together, each was able to save a little money. Mizell said the grass at the Bauguess field is currently rooting well, and should be growing green by the time the students return to school. "By October, it will be well on its way. For baseball season, just a little fertilizer and we'll have a field that will rival any in the state."

The laser leveling was completed by Carolina Green Corp out of Indian Trail, NC and the turf was sprigged by Oakland Plantation Turf Farm of Council, NC. The 150 tons of sand for the project was provided locally by Tarheel Sand & Stone.

The main funding for the leveling, and sprigging of grass is being provided by the Major Larry J. Bauguess, Jr. Memorial Fund, who had a special interest in the project. "When we first asked for the field to be named after Larry, we knew we wanted it to be a field that would do him honor in bearing his name," stated Committee Member Keith Deveraux. "Before we moved on to any other projects, we wanted to be sure the field was a priority. Otherwise, any other project we did wouldn't make sense." He continued, "The Memorial Fund also awarded $2000 in scholarships this spring in Larry's name, so re-doing the field was a stretch for us. But it was better to do this sooner, rather than later. It definitely fits with our mission."

Coach Johnson said, "We're always glad to have mountain teams in our conference - like Ashe County - come down in February and play on a green field. This February, it'll be green and safe;…even better."



Copyright 2010 Major Larry J. Bauguess, Jr. Memorial Committee