ANONYMOUS CHARLESTON DONOR
GIVES $5,000 TO ST. ANDREW’S
PARKS AND PLAYGROUND TO HONOR
PARKER FAMILY’S DECADES OF SERVICE
A Charleston-based business owner, who wished to remain anonymous, recently donated $5,000 to St. Andrew’s Parks and Playground to honor the Parker family for its more than five decades of volunteer service and participation at the West Ashley recreation department.
Beginning with Charles “Pops” Parker volunteering as a coach in 1967, the Parker family has been consistently represented at St. Andrew’s Parks during the many youth sports seasons since. Four generations of the family have taken the field at the St. Andrew’s complex on Playground Road as coaches and/or players over the years since “Pops” first volunteered.
Raeh Ann Parker, daughter of “Pops” and a long-time West Ashley resident, grew up playing youth sports with St. Andrew’s Parks, coached by her father. Later, Raeh Ann’s daughter and grandson were also coached by both “Pops” and Raeh Ann as the family grew and continued to volunteer and play at St. Andrew’s.
“Pops” Parker passed away in 2015 after serving as a much-requested and admired coach in boxing, baseball, and softball with St. Andrew’s for nearly 50 years. His enduring dedication and service resulted in his induction into the St. Andrew’s Parks and Playground Hall of Fame in 2016.
The anonymous donor’s only request regarding the use of the $5,000 was that St. Andrew’s Parks ask the Parkers how they would like St. Andrew’s to utilize the money. St. Andrew’s Athletic Director Joshua Singleton contacted Raeh Ann Parker to inform her of the donation, and Parker suggested that the money be used to purchase new equipment for the upcoming Spring 2021 Youth Sports season – a fitting tribute to the Parker family’s long-term commitment to St. Andrew’s Parks.
“When we heard that the donation had been done as a way to recognize our family, it was such an honor,” Raeh Ann Parker said. “I know my dad would have wanted the money put towards helping the youth sports (at St. Andrew’s Parks), because he loved coaching and volunteering there all those years.”
Anonymous $5,000 donation made in honor of Parker Family Singleton said the entire St. Andrew’s Parks team was “extremely appreciative” of the donation, and pleased it had been done to honor the Parkers.
“I know Raeh Ann and her family have a great love for youth sports, and acknowledging that through this incredibly generous donation helps carry out the legacy her father established,” Singleton said. “The new equipment is a tremendous help in furthering our mission to provide high quality youth sports programs here in West Ashley and the local community.”
The donation enabled St. Andrew’s Parks to purchase items such as baseballs, catcher’s gear, gloves and mitts, batting tees, helmets, and more. Raeh Ann Parker, who will coach a team in age 7-8 Coach Pitch baseball at St. Andrew’s this spring, was impressed by the amount of new equipment and excited for the Spring 2021 season.
“There are so many great values kids learn from youth sports, and my dad instilled those in me and lots of other kids,” Parker said. “I wouldn’t keep coming out to coach if I didn’t think we were doing any good, but I know all of us involved in youth sports at St. Andrew’s are. This donation helps us to do even more.”