LPGA tournament helps league build its baseball field of dreamsWritten by Kyle Reynolds | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Nine-year-old Tyrus Carroll loves hitting the diamond to play ball, hitting a baseball and hitting just about everything.
“He loves hitting anything,” his mother, Chantillie Doering, said. “During the winter I’ll even throw him snowballs and he’ll hit them with a shovel.”
Tryus has Down syndrome, a rare bone disease and underwent open-heart surgery when he was 4 months old.
But baseball? Chantillie said the game has helped Tyrus develop and integrate him socially into their neighborhood.
“He’s had delayed development in everything by about two to three years, but he is ahead in hand-eye coordination because he practices so much,” she said.
Tyrus plays in the Miracle League of Northwest Ohio (MLNWO), one of the charities that will benefit from the Jamie Farr Owens Corning Classic LPGA tournament in July.
The league, which is in its second season, gives physically and mentally disabled children the opportunity to play baseball.
Five-time Farr winner Se Ri Pak met with children May 19 to cheer them on in a practice and teach them how to swing a golf club.
“This is a great experience,” Pak said. “These kids are our future and I can feel the excitement from all of them.”
Money raised from the golf tournament will be used to fund a new field for the Miracle League, said MLNWO president and founder Jeff Barton.
The new field has total construction costs of $350,000 and will feature a $160,000 wheelchair-friendly rubberized surface, Barton said.
The league has received offers to cover the construction costs by doing the work for free, leaving the rubberized surface as the big expense, which will be met by money earned from the golf tournament, Barton said.
Construction on the field, which will be located in Brentwood Park in Northwood, started May 27 with hopes of having it completed by fall, or at the latest, next spring.
The four-week season will draw to a close June 8. Games are played at the baseball field at Lark Elementary School in Northwood.
Barton said the league is not only fun for its participants, but the interaction and teamwork helps the children develop.
“It brings up the kids’ self-esteem up and helps them improve their social skills,” Barton said. “It is a great thing so far.”