The USSSA Military World Tournament kicked off Thursday with opening ceremonies and an exhibition match-up between the Wounded Warrior Amputee Team and the Panama City Beach Fire Department. 119 teams from bases representing 24 states traveled to Bay County to play in the tourney, which boasts all five branches of the Military. Tournament director Jeff Miller says for the athletes, the tournament means more then just softball.
"A lot of them are happy to be back," he says. "For a lot of these players this year, they were deployed over the past two years- so a lot of them have been gone. A lot of them are back for the first time. This is their one tournament of the year. A lot of these teams only play one tournament a year, this is what they look forward to, this is what they take their leave for, this is what they take the vacation for. For them, this is the biggest event in military softball for the year."
The Military World Tournament wraps up Sunday.