Darryl Strawberry tells students story of struggle with addiction, finding faith

By  | 

WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAW) -- Baseball legend Darryl Strawberry told his story of addiction and the importance of finding faith to student athletes in Central Wisconsin.

Strawberry, who says he is now a minister, has been teaming up with the organization Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) for the past couple years. He spoke at FCA's celebration banquet fundraiser at Highland Community Church in Wausau Thursday.

He has been speaking to groups all over the county and acknowledges the mistakes of his past, including drugs, arrests and prison. Strawberry now says he want to be known as much for his faith as he was for baseball.

"I've been preaching the gospel for nine years and never looked back. It's been a blessing and a privilege to get away from all sports and everything else and get at the purpose of life and do something that's more productive. That's going to make a difference in society. That's going to make a difference in people's lives," Darryl Strawberry said.

"He cares more about Jesus and that's his heart to see the Gospel spread. He knows how much influence coaches can have on athletes and that's Fellowship Of Christian Athletes goal," Russ Bahr, the North Central Wisconsin area representative for the FCA, said. "Let's reach a coach who can reach a hundred more kids, and teach them character development, not just the sport they're in."

Bahr said the fundraiser Thursday helps the group celebrate their accomplishments throughout the years, and also bring in more interest for the program.

Strawberry played with multiple teams throughout his Major League Baseball career. Most notably, he was a seven time all start with the New York Mets and took the team to a World Series win in 1986.