The Oakland Athletics honored the family of fallen Hayward police officer Sgt. Scott Lunger prior to Sunday's game against the Houston Astros.
The team hosted a number of pregame ceremonies, coinciding with annual Law Enforcement Day, in memory of Lunger, an arden baseball — and A's — fan.
The 48-year-old Brentwood resident was gunned down during a traffic stop July 22.
Lunger stopped a vehicle whose driver was "observed driving erratically," police said. He got out of his car and approached the driver's side of the vehicle, but its occupant — suspect Mark Estrada of Oakland — opened fire without warning, police added. The 15-year veteran police officer succumbed to his injuries.
A’s players kicked things off by wearing special Hayward Police Department hats during batting practice. The hats were also sold during a silent auction with proceeds benefitting the Hayward Police Association.
A police motorcade rode onto the field around 12:45 p.m. Sunday after which A’s players’ wives and girlfriends presented Lunger’s family with personalized jerseys.
Lunger’s father, Paul Lunger, and two daughters, Ashton and Sara, threw the game’s ceremonial first pitches. Hall of Famer Rickey Henderson – Lunger’s favorite player — was on-hand to catch Paul Lunger’s pitch.
The Oakland Police Department and Alameda County Sheriff’s Office presented the colors for the national anthem, which was performed on the trumpet by San Jose police officer Robert Payne. Lunger’s teammates from the Tri-Valley A’s also joined the A’s on the field during the national anthem.
Prior to the anthem, attendees and players observed a moment of silence in memory of Lunger, who commentator Dick Callahan deemed “one of [the A’s] biggest fans.”
The A’s also hung a "Lunger" jersey in the dugout during the game. It has No. 106 – his badge number – on the back.
The team also placed Lunger’s own hat and glove on first base.
Lunger’s family was given letters of "support and love" from the A’s community," Callahan said, adding that the officer's family members are "members of the Oakland A’s family."