Ella Whistler helps to kick off Noblesville Youth Baseball season

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NOBLESVILLE, Ind. -- Ella Whistler helped the city of Noblesville kick off its youth baseball season.

In front of a crowd of thousands, Whistler threw out the first pitch for the Noblesville Youth Baseball opener. After landing a helicopter on a nearby field, members of a National Guard unit delivered her the game ball.

May 25 will mark one year since a student shot Whistler and teacher Jason Seaman at Noblesville West Middle School. Community members called seeing Ella throw out the first pitch inspiring.

“Nothing is going to compare to see her being able to throw out that first pitch tonight,” Noblesville Youth Baseball president Jeremy Johnson said.

Since the shooting, Noblesville residents say the community has become stronger, closer, and more secure than ever before, attributing part of the experience to the strength shown by Whistler and Seaman.

“Everybody has really come together. It’s like we’re one big family,” Erin Knapp said.

Noblesville Schools superintendent Beth Niedermeyer called the support and kindness demonstrated by community members the past 11 months nothing short of amazing.

“And I think that’s what makes Noblesville such a special place,” she said.

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