BRENTWOOD - A Brentwood fifth-grader's essay about overcoming medical obstacles has earned him a trip to Minneapolis, Minn., where he'll get special recognition at the Major League Baseball All-Star Game this July.

Brentwood student Raymond Beasley, along with a ninth-grader from Arizona, won the grand prize in an essay contest entitled "Breaking Barriers: In Sports, In Life" hosted by MLB and Scholastic.

In his essay, Raymond described how he has overcome multiple surgeries for a brain tumor, according to a statement from MLB.

Despite those challenges, he has always had what he called an "outstanding life," MLB officials said.

In addition to being honored during this summer's All-Star Game, Raymond will meet with Sharon Robinson, daughter of baseball legend Jackie Robinson, whose legacy as an African American breaking through baseball's color barrier inspired the essay contest.

The fifth-grader and his teacher will also win laptop computers, a set of "Breaking Barriers" T-shirts for their class and a book authored by Sharon Robinson.

Raymond's essay won the top prize out of nearly 19,000 essays that poured in from students nationwide, along with Canada and Puerto Rico, according to MLB.

"The number of essays we received this year is phenomenal -- they were uplifting and truly inspiring," Sharon Robinson said in a statement. "I am honored that the values my father used to break the color barrier have played such a large role in helping so many young people break through their own barriers."



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