BRIDGEWATER, NJ – Army veteran Sais Singh, a 1993 graduate of Somerville High School and former resident of Branchburg, was invited to TD Bank Ballpark Friday night by the Somerset Patriots to throw out the ceremonial first pitch before the start of the game.
Not quite the perfect pitch, but afterwards, Singh said he was pleased he didn’t bounce the ball or throw it over the head of the catcher.
Singh, who has lived in Seattle, WA the past several years with his daughter, was back home visiting family and friends; accompanying him to the ballpark was Army buddy Kate Knowles-Murphy, a resident of Tampa, who was invited to perform “God Bless America” as part of the pre-game ceremonies.
Knowles-Murphy was poised, calm and collected, unlike some others who are handed the microphone to sing during opening ceremonies,
When she was stationed with the US Central Command in Tampa, Knowles-Murphy performed the “Star Spangled Banner” frequently prior to Tampa Bay Rays Major League baseball games.
Singh is retiring from the Army this year after 23 years of active and reserve service. During that time, he was deployed overseas 12 times, including three deployments to the Mideast.
Knowles-Murphy was an Air Force Master Sergeant for 12 years before transferring to the Army Reserve where she is a Staff Sergeant. She has served her country for 16 years, including 7 deployments overseas to Iraq, Afghanistan, South America and South Korea.
Several fans came up to Singh and Knowles-Murphy during the game to thank them for their military service.
The Patriots lost the rain-delayed game, 5-4 to the New Britain Bees in the 12th inning. The fireworks display scheduled after the game was postponed to Saturday night. Game tiem is 7:05 p.m.