Karen Donohoe(CHICAGO) — An 82-year-old die-hard Chicago Cubs fan showed her team loyalty Thursday night by receiving her first tattoo ever in honor of the World Series contenders.
Barbara “Babs” Sechrest, 82, of Des Plaines, Illinois, her daughter Karen Donohoe and her eldest grandchild, Ryan Sechrest, 30, received the matching tattoos together.
“She didn’t go to bed until 2 in the morning because she was so excited after the tattoo and the fun night we had,” Donohoe told ABC News of her mother. “She kept telling me and my nephew, ‘This was just the best day and the best bonding experience!’ Seeing her excitement was the best part for me.”
Donohoe said her mother has been a Cubs fan since she was a small child.
Babs Sechrest grew up one of 10 children with a mother who was a huge fan of the baseball team.
“Me and my girlfriends, we sat in the bleachers all day long because that’s where the sun was, we liked getting a suntan,” Babs Sechrest laughed as she told ABC News. “I was 18 or 19 [years old]. In those days, it was just 50 cents on Tuesday to get in because they called it ‘Ladies Day.’ If we were working, we’d switch our day off just so we could be there at the games.”
Babs Sechrest married and had four children and moved with her husband, Richard, to one mile away from Wrigley Field ballpark so she could walk with her children to the games. Her husband died in 1998.
“My best memory of my mom is one day, she came and picked me up at school; it was a half day,” Donohoe said. “I was 10 years old and we got sub sandwiches and went to the Cubs game. She taught me all the rules of baseball. She taught me how to watch for the pitches, be respectful, never stand up for an inning. You stood up for the National Anthem and you didn’t fidget.”
“I can recall it to this day and it was 30-something years ago,” Donohoe said. “It was just so cool.”
The daughter said that in 2004, she and her mom made a pact that if the Cubs ever made it to the World Series, they’d get a tattoo together.
“The Cubs haven’t been the greatest team, so we didn’t think it was going to be one of those things,” Donohoe said. “She always said never to squelch a bet.”
On Thursday night, Babs Sechrest, clad in her vintage Ron Santo jersey, her grandson and her daughter walked into the Perfection Dermagraphics tattoo shop in their hometown and received tattoos of the Cubs’ team logo.
“It was exhilarating, honestly, to be with them and to have this tattoo with my youngest child and my first grandchild,” Babs Sechrest said. “We just love each other, so we decided to do this all at the same time.”
Tonight, the Cubs play the Cleveland Indians in the third game of the series and the first at Wrigley Field.
Babs Sechrest and her family will watch on TV while celebrating the 16th birthday of one of her grandsons.
“We’re going to go nuts at this house,” she said. “I’m predicting [the Cubs] are going to take all three games here. That’s the gut feeling.”
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