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Honored guest Harold Ullrich gets a hug from his granddaughter before the PLTMS girl’s basketball game on Tuesday.

Ballplayer Honors Grandfather

00:00 AM February 01, 2018


PLTMS eighth-grader Madison Grennan has been wanting her grandfather to watch her play basketball, but because of his work schedule he was unable to do so. Madison’s grandfather, Harold Ullrich, who lives in Amboy, finally made it to a game on Tuesday afternoon in Prophetstown.


Harold Ullrich enjoys the PLTMS girl's basketball game
with his family.  he was honored with gifts prior to the game
by his granddaughter.

Unfortunately, the circumstances that allowed Ullrich to attend were not what Madison was hoping for. Ullrich, 55, was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer a few months ago and is now unable to work. Grennan decided she wanted to do something special for her grandpa’s visit to the game.


Madison shared her grandfather’s story with her teammates and then went about collecting gifts and money to present to him before they took the court. “Once I found out about grandpa I decided to do something,” said Madison.


At halftime of the seventh-grade game Ullrich’s oldest granddaughter along with her nine teammates surrounded the honored guest who sat on the front row of the bleachers and presented him with the gifts they had collected. The entire team was dressed in flannel shirts which is Ullrich’s signature look.


The gifts included a blanket, teddy bear, Green Bay Packers T-shirt, a new flannel shirt, a card signed by the entire team and a cash donation. Tears flowed as Ullrich gave each one of the girls a hug. The team had also made 20 purple posters that were hung in the gym to show support for Grandpa Harold and the fight against pancreatic cancer. “My teammates joined in the project when they found out how important he was to me,” said Grennan.

Harold Ullrich watches his granddaughter
Madison Grennen (#10) as she plays against Morrison. 


Ullrich told his granddaughter, “I did my part now you do yours,” referring to their agreement of him getting to the game and her team getting a win. The Prophets didn’t disappoint as they defeated the Morrison Colts 29-14. The Morrison team also showed their support to Ullrich as they all gave him a fist bump when they took the court.


The honored guest said it was a good surprise and that he’s always been a big supporter of his granddaughter. It was a beautiful tribute and a special moment that all in attendance will remember for a long time.

A Go-Fund-Me page has been established



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  • Reva Arbuckle:

    01 Feb 2018 10:01:00

    Just want to thank everyone for such a wonderful surprise and all of the support given to my cousin Madison and my uncle Harold. It is so appreciated…..more then ever thank you

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