Just in time for the holidays, a beautiful honor for two men who shared the love of water skiing with their families, their lake, and the entire Arkansas water skiing community.
Richard Williams is announcing the establishment of the USA Water Ski & Wake Sports Foundation's Kent Williams and Alton Ball Kingsmen Scholarship.
The Kent Williams and Alton Ball Kingsmen Scholarship will be awarded annually to a South Central Water Skier who has participated in the South Central Regionals and can be either an incoming Freshman or a current undergraduate in a four-year college or university.
Kent Williams and Alton Ball were accomplished skiers, barefooters, and show skiers. They made up the duo called the Kingsmen Professional Water Skiers in the 1960s.
Kent Williams was a member of the American Water Ski Association (Now USA Water Ski & Wake Sports) and the American Barefoot Club. As a young man, he was one half of the show
skiing duo The Kingsmen of Little Rock, Arkansas, performing shows with his lifelong friend, Alton Ball. He was a founding member of the Arkansas Water Ski Club and
a lifetime member of the DeGray Ski Club.
Kent used to say you work hard all week so you can play harder at the lake on the weekends. He always loved to tell stories of when he and Alton would be practicing their barefooting acts and they would be invited to someone’s campsite to eat lunch or dinner.
His love for water skiing was passed down to many people including his son Richard and grandchildren Kent and Michael. Kent was a champion for water skiing and enjoyed being on the lake years after he could no longer ski. He loved the friendships he made through the years and valued them regardless of how long he knew you. He was a force in water skiing in the 1960s in Arkansas and continued to love the sport the rest of his life.
Alton Ball was an accomplished performance water skier, also a member of the American Water Ski Association and the American Barefoot Club, as a rated barefoot water skier. As a younger man, he performed "Shows, Thrills, Spills, Chills" at water ski shows as one half of "The Kingsmen Professional Water Skiersnearly with his friend Kent Williams.
Alton often said the best job I ever had was skiing for hamburgers and hot dogs alongside the campsites at Lake Ouachita. A favorite story he would tell was when he and Kent were launching the boat and were recognized by a little boy who ran back to the campsite yelling “Dad! Dad! The Boys from Little Rock are here!“
Alton's love for the sport of waterskiing was a driving force for him as a young adult and
he maintained his friendships, sealed by the sport, for the rest of his life. Alton’s love for waterskiing was infectious and he passed along his knowledge and love for waterskiing to countless persons over the years by teaching and demonstration.
He was truly a pioneer and founding force for the sport of waterskiing in Arkansas in the 1960s.
An incredible honor for two incredible water skiers!
For more information on the USA Water Ski & Wake Sports Foundation's Scholarships go HERE or email firstname.lastname@example.org