Kettering baseball rivals mourn loss of local Army Ranger

KETTERING, Ohio (WDTN) – Two rival high school baseball teams came together on Saturday in honor of a Kettering-Fairmont High School graduate killed in the line of duty.

Sgt. Cameron Thomas died while fighting ISIS in Afghanistan in late April.

“His attitude and his demeanor was contagious. It was really worth catching,” said Kettering resident, Mark Ewald.

Emotions remain high as Kettering mourns the loss of fallen soldier, 23 year old Sgt. Cameron Thomas.

Community members say his drive sparked the ceremony.

“Both coaches agreed that we would still move forward with this ceremony whether it was rain or shine,” said Kettering resident, Dale Reliford.

Dedicated to play a game of baseball in Cameron’s honor, the two rivals showed up to muddy baseball fields despite their cancelled game.

“It’s a lot bigger than a game,” said Reliford.

Mark Ewald’s daughter went to school with Cameron, and says Cameron treated everyone like a friend.

“He had a spirit about him that connected with any school or any kind of kid. He went across a lot of lines. I think his life was lived doing that. Protecting, you know, who you are and what you want to be. What you stand for.”

It was a dream for Cameron to become an Army Ranger, serving three tours for our country.The pentagon is now investigating his death after a tense battle with ISIS in Afghanistan.

The pentagon has hinted at the possibility of friendly fire. However, that remains under investigation.

Also killed that day was Sgt. Joshua Rodgers of Bloomington, Illinois.

“It’s our job as parents, coaches and administrators, I mean the principal was here, the Mayor. It’s important for all of us to continue to remind everybody that there is a lot going on in this world. A lot of great people in this country are fighting for what believe in,” said Ewald.

A memorial for Cameron is planned for Sunday at Polen Farm in Kettering.

This is a link to a GoFundMe account for the the family. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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