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Slideshow: Friends dedicate Chat Jones Memorial Fields

Tiffany Ervin jokes with a friend. Tiffany Ervin jokes with a friend.

Community members honored Chester Allen "Chat" Jones on Saturday by dedicating fields used by Special Needs Baseball in his name.

Jones, who died last Oct. 12 at age 63, cofounded Special Needs Baseball with his brother Donnie. A large crowd turned out for the dedication of the sign, which was paid for with donations from the Kiwanis Club, Jones's Sunday school class at First Methodist Church and other friends.
Kiwanian Jack Hatfield, who started a Kiwanis Aktion Club, a Kiwanis club for adults with disabilities and a regular Special Needs baseball volunteer, emceed the program. The North Henderson Air Force JROTC presented colors and Michelle Masci sang the national anthem.
Jones's widow, Judy Lyda Jones, and Donnie Jones, unveiled the sign for the Chat Jones Memorial Fields.
Here is the text of a tribute to Chat Jones contained in the program:
Chester Allen "Chat" Jones left his community a far better place than he found it.
If Chat saw something that needed done, he did it. If he saw someone who tried hard and needed that extra boost to achieve success, helped. If he heard about an unmet need that would help a community, he led the charge to meet the need.
When Chat's brother, Donnie, a longtime baseball coach, suggested starting a Special Needs Baseball League, Chat was all along. Chat knew how to organize, he knew people and he knew how to appeal for help. Of Special Needs Baseball, though, he once said, "I've never had to ask for a check."
People gave because they knew Chat and trusted Chat. If Chat was organizing it, they knew it would be done right, with only one goal: to serve the special needs players and their families. The last person who ever expected credit or wanted credit was Chat Jones himself. The laughter and the smiles of the players, every one an All Star, every one a home run hitter, every one a Golden Glove winner, was all the reward Chat needed.
When Chat Jones died Oct. 12, 2012, we felt a hole in our heart. We miss him today and remember him always. Chat had a common last name, an uncommon first name and a human spirit that soared. We are blessed to have his example to follow.
The Kiwanis Club of Hendersonville — the vehicle that Chat used to accomplish so much good for his community — is proud to dedicate fields 8 and 9 as the Chat Jones Memorial Fields.
As the years pass, those who see this sign might well ask, "Who was Chat Jones?" It is a good story. The short answer is out here, in the crack of the bat, the squeals of laughter, the sunlit faces, the trip around the bases. Here, Chat's spirit lives on.