Holt family launches initiative to fight cancer

April 29th, 2021

ARLINGTON -- Rangers infielder knows how special it is to play for his hometown team after growing up in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. It’s even more meaningful to him to contribute to the community, no matter how big or small.

So Holt, who signed with the Rangers in February, and his wife, Lakyn, on Thursday announced the creation of #holtoffcancer. It is an initiative designed to raise funds and awareness for the fight against childhood cancer in the Dallas-Forth Worth area, specifically at the Pediatric Oncology Unit at Cook Children’s Hospital in Fort Worth.

“I've always wanted to be able to help somehow, and I've always loved kids,” Holt said. “I think [the charity] was just the perfect fit. If you're working in that field [childhood cancer], you have to be an angel of some sort, because it's tough to go into the hospitals and see kids that are going through what they're going through.”

The Holt family has not yet visited Cook Children’s Hospital, but they’re hoping that once COVID-19 regulations are relaxed, they can get more hands-on visits to be able to meet the children and their families.

The awareness symbol for pediatric cancer is a gold ribbon, so Brock and Lakyn designed gold ribbon shirts and hats that are available to purchase online. The logo on the shirts and hats is a gold ribbon with a cowboy hat and a handlebar mustache, mirroring Holt’s own facial hair. Proceeds from the sales will be donated and split between Cook Children’s Hospital and the Jimmy Fund at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston.

Rangers players and coaches wore the #holtoffcancer T-shirts during batting practice for the first time on Monday. Holt’s former baseball coach at Stephenville High School owns a printing company and was able to print the shirts.

“Being able to help out like this, even if it's just a small amount, I'm very grateful to be able to do that,” Holt said. “I said in a previous interview that you know we're very fortunate as professional athletes to have a platform and to be able to do things like this to help out.

“I'm trying to use it the best I can, because baseball is not going to last forever. It's something that I enjoy doing. I want to help. Me and my wife, we're trying to do that so, hopefully, the shirts can help raise some money and we can make a little bit of a difference for a family or two in need.”

During his years with the Red Sox from 2013-19, Holt was involved in the community in Boston. The Jimmy Fund is the official charity of the Red Sox, and every year a player is chosen to serve as the captain to raise awareness for childhood cancer. Holt was the Red Sox’s Jimmy Fund Captain from 2016-19.

In 2018, Holt and his wife started the Brock’s Stars program, which provided tickets to Jimmy Fund patients and their families for Tuesday home games.

Holt said the shirts they sold in Boston made a lot more money than anybody expected, and they’re hoping the same can happen this year. 

“I think just from the moment I got over to the Red Sox in ‘13, the Jimmy Fund and the Red Sox have gone hand in hand. Both have been very important organizations to each other,” Holt said. “It's just been a special, special place for me and my wife, that we’ll always continue to try and help out however we can. It’s something that we wanted to continue to do and also throw some local ties into it with Cook Children's here in Fort Worth. It's become a huge part of me.”