HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - When Larry Mixon inherited the Sacred Heart baseball program, the Crusaders didn't even have a baseball field.
On Friday, Sacred Heart honored the late Mixon by naming the baseball field after him in front of his wife Sandra, mother Gloria, other family and friends.
Mixon passed away in January after his second battle with cancer. He was 56-years-old.
"For years, he just put so much work into this and I feel so proud of him," said Eric Mixon, son of Larry. "It makes me cry just how many people he's been able to touch and just how far he's been able to reach and bring this sport to this school."
"I mean, just to see how many people he's really touched, I mean that's just amazing," said Nolan Mixon, another son of Larry. "I don't know the majority of the people here but just to see how many people showed up just 'cause they loved him."
A Hattiesburg High graduate, Mixon played baseball at William Carey under coach Bobby Halford.
In his eight seasons as head coach of Sacred Heart, Mixon brought the Crusaders to three division titles and the school's first playoff win in 2014. First-year coach Drew Dewease said the complex has always felt like "Larry Mixon" field, but Friday just made it official.
"It really doesn't register until you play the first home game," Dewease said. "It's felt like that all along. I think the kids have felt like that since he passed away. I think they wanted to honor him that way here and play in a way that would please him."