I once heard someone say that sometimes those that are in your life the shortest are the ones who can have the greatest impact.
I never understood until I met Buster Kaiser — and then received the call we all dread.
Buster was a bundle of energy who truly loved every aspect of the game of softball. He loved teaching it, planning and learning. He was that person who could get you so excited about the game just by listening to him talk about it.
Buster was an amazing man who took on a 12u team that was looking for a head coach and jumped in 110 percent.
Amazingly, Buster didn’t have a daughter on the team. As a matter of fact, his daughter Shae is in her final year of 18u before heading onto her next step — college ball. Shae and Buster were both willing to have Buster miss Shea’s final year of travel ball to help the next group of girls coming up in the game. And Shae was right there next to her dad teaching our girls with equal doses of smiles, laughter, and knowledge.
Buster took a core group of players and added wonderful pieces. In a matter of weeks, a team was created that was all-in with members who felt as though they had been together forever before we even had our first practice.
As the school ball season wound down, Buster would drive from Bowman, GA to Acworth, GA (quite a hike) multiple times a week to work with anyone who wanted to work on their swing. And the girls returned his commitment with their own trust and commitment. His energy and honesty created a team of girls and parents who were all in and ready.
Buster wasn’t about the wins this weekend or next, he was about keeping a group of girls together for multiple years and watching them grow and achieve their goals together. He understood the true meaning of “team” in an environment that changes with the seasons.
Buster was an amazing father, a dedicated coach, a friend, and a wonderful human being who left us far too soon. Even though he left this world to soon in our eyes, we can only hope to be able to reach the number of people in our lives that Buster was able to reach in his.
The one thing that came out of this loss was seeing that the Atlanta softball world is truly a community that supports each other. While we compete against each other weekend after weekend, it was our softball community that called, texted, and sent messages on how they could help our team and players.
What a refreshing thought in a world of negativity. But then again, what Buster brought to each person he met is positivity and encouragement.
He believed in his players and his players believed in him.
So, Fire 06 Kaiser will commit our season to one goal #bustitforbuster. We will do our best to make our coach proud.
About The Author: “Coach Chris” has been a proud member of the softball community for the better part of three decades, as a player, coach and trainer.
A native of St. John’s Michigan, Chris, an ASA certified instructor, has led 6U, 8U and 10U rec teams at the well-respected Twin Creeks Softball Complex in Woodstock, GA.
She’s currently in her third year as a coach in the fiercely competitive North Georgia travel ball circuit, where she’s garnered a reputation as a defensive specialist with a unique ability to reach players and help them go further than they ever could.
One thing Chris’ players never do is run out of gas. That’s thanks in large part to her multiyear status as a NASM certified personal trainer.
To reach Coach Chris, click here.