Stephen Bostwick thought he was randomly selected to throw out the first pitch at a recent Baltimore Orioles’ home game — until he realized the catcher was his deployed son, Addam.
Bostwick, the Waterford, PA, Postmaster, planned to attend the Father’s Day baseball game with Addam, an Army specialist stationed at Fort Meade, MD, who said he’d be home from Afghanistan in time.
But then Addam, who’d been away for four months, called to say he had missed his flight and couldn’t attend.
Stephen, who served in the Marines, understood, but was disappointed.
“I had to be convinced to go without my son,” said Stephen, who was accompanied to the game by his girlfriend, Diane Shearer; daughter-in-law, Paige Bostwick; and one-year-old grandson, Brodie.
The Postmaster didn’t know that the baseball outing and the missed flight story were orchestrated by the Orioles, Fort Meade and his family as part of a surprise reunion.
Even his seating arrangement was part of the plan: The team had taken care of the family’s tickets and instructed them to have Stephen there at a specific time.
Then an Orioles’ public relations staffer approached Stephen and told him he had been “randomly” selected to deliver the first pitch.
When he got down to the field, he was shocked when Addam emerged from the dugout to greet his dad. Their emotional reunion was covered by several media outlets, including NBC Sports.
After the pitch, Addam and Stephen stood side-by-side for the national anthem.
“We played catch together in front of the dugout. One of the Orioles gave me his glove to use,” said Stephen.
The 21-year postal employee saw the reunion as a way to celebrate the contributions of military service members.
“They make sacrifices for our freedoms, and so do their families,” he said. “It should be recognized.”