3:52 PM Fri, Jun 05, 2009 |
Two years ago, Sgt. Sheldon Smith started the Dallas Police
Athletic League with a dream of giving kids an alternative to
gangs and drugs.
Today, it's amazing what he has been able to accomplish.
Relying on the generosity of donations, he's running a
full-fledged athletic league to help youngsters on a
"From a police perspective, it helps in our fight against
criminal activity by deterring kids from becoming involved in
gangs and drugs," said Smith, who works at the Police
Department's West Dallas storefront. "It gives them something
positive to do."
One of Smith's most promising up and coming boxers is Ray
Ximenez, a 16-year-old pugilist who just returned from an
international youth tournament in Armenia. Ximenez has won
five national titles so far. He and other boxers from Smith's
program are going to Denver this weekend for the national
Junior Olympics competition.
"He's a great kid," Smith said. "You wouldn't ever know that
he was a boxer because he's so quiet. He makes really good
grades. He's just an overall good kid."
The organization's basketball program begins tonight at Gospel
Lighthouse Church on Illinois Avenue. On June 22, PAL is
holding a major league soccer camp at Cottonwood Park.
On June 27th and 28th, PAL will hold a two-day boxing
tournament at the Fair Park coliseum. Smith expects more than
200 boxers from all over Texas to participate.
Anyone interested in contacting Smith regarding the PAL can
reach him at 214-202-1969 or