Oregon’s baseball team will honor the Altobelli family during the season.
J.J. Altobelli, a four-year starter at shortstop of the Ducks from 2010-13, lost his parents and sister in a helicopter crash last month. John Altobelli, the baseball coach at Orange Coast College, and his wife, Keri, and daughter Alyssa all died in the accident that killed six others, including Kobe Bryant and his daughter.
The Ducks will have a 14-second moment of silence before opening the season Friday against Minnesota in Tempe, Ariz., and again before the home opener against Nevada on Feb. 21. John Altobelli wore No. 14 as the coach at OCC.
The Ducks will wear a decal with the initials JA, KA, and AA on their helmets throughout the season. J.J. Altobelli and his sister Lexi will be recognized before a game at PK Park later in the season.
Oregon coach Mark Wasikowski attended the memorial service for the Altobellis on Monday in Anaheim, Calif. He was an assistant coach at Oregon when J.J. Altobelli played for the Ducks.
“When you get over 10,000 people sitting in a stadium and the emotion that was there, it was an awful day and a wonderful day at the same time,” Wasikowski said on Tuesday. “The circumstances are just tragic.”
Wasikowski spent time at the memorial with his former boss at Oregon, George Horton, who has joined the OCC staff to help fill the void left without Altobelli this season.
“He’s an awesome man and if there is anybody that is going to assist that roster to help them be better people, I don’t know if any of us would pick anyone better than Coach (Horton),” Wasikowski said. “I am excited for him to have that opportunity to impact young people who are going through some tough stuff.”