Digging Deep: Foran Breaks Ground on New Field: Danni Kemp Memorial Softball Field

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Digging Deep: Foran Breaks Ground on New Field: Danni Kemp Memorial Softball Field

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Deanna Dempsey

Staff Writer

June 1 marks the first day of demolition on the softball field. Photo courtesy: Julie Johnson

Upon the Foran softball season’s end, the construction for a new field begins. Joseph A. Foran softball field faces a  reconstruction into a brand new turf field, leaving the dirt behind. The field will be redone by next season in order to honor former athlete, Danni Kemp. Danni was a Foran student- athlete who achieved so much during her high school experience. Her death occurred during two thousand sixteen from a rare brain tumor called DIPG (Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma), previously reported on by staff members Jules Tuozzola, Carly Whelan, and Bella McPadden. Her spirit will live on with the reconstruction of the field.

Former softball player (2013), assistant coach, and teacher at Foran, Gina Georgetti, gives her thoughts about the new stadium. “ I think it represents the strong sense  of community we have in Milford and how important each student is. Dedicating a field to Danni shows how every alumni and student is important to Foran High School and the community.” Her views are that this opportunity will bring the community together and keep the memory of Danni alive. Head Coach, Julie Johnson believes “ It is so important to build a new field for Foran Softball because it shows the commitment the city and school administration have for this sport and its female athletes. Building a first class softball complex is just the next chapter in Foran Softball Team’s  long history of success dating back to one of the pioneers for Title IX, Edna Fraser. Naming the field after Danni Kemp is just the icing on the cake.” Best friend to Danni and former Foran graduate (2014) and softball player, Fallon Bevino agrees with Coach Johnson stating, “ Dedicating the new softball field is not only essential to Danni’s legacy but sets a standard and example for everyone to step foot on that field for now on. Danni exemplified everything that a 5-star student-athlete, leader, and role model could ever be. It’s important for everyone to remember Danni, not just those who had the opportunity to know her like I and many other of my peers and teammates were lucky enough too. For those who weren’t fortunate to Danni personally, dedicating this field in her honor gives them a chance to understand who she was and how massive her impact was. The importance here is how long this field will ensure Danni’s legacy lives on.”

           Coach Walker, head of the baseball team, had many valuable moments with Danni. He taught her a whole lot about the game and new skills. “ I think the Kemp family, Foran High and the softball program are all very excited about the new field. It will be a great addition to our athletic facilities and will assist in continued success for our athletes. The name the field will bare could not be more fitting: Danni Kemp Field. Danni was an amazing student athlete here at Foran. She put in hour after hour on that field perfecting her skills.  I was fortunate to be Danni’s private coach. We spent quite a bit of time together, working on her hitting or fielding, or whatever other aspect of the game Danni chose. It was such a pleasure to work with her. Everything about Danni was infectious. People were drawn to her, her smile, her personality, her work ethic. She was just a joy to be around. Danni also has a tremendous family. Cliff and Melinda are great people, and I’m fortunate to call them my friends. It is a great honor for great person and a great family.” Coach states that Danni always put in the work and deserved her success. He cherished the moments that he had with her. Watching her grow into an outstanding athlete and person had an impact on Coach Walker.

            Foran softball has and will always support Danni. Foran High School ‘s recent fundraisers such as the Wiffle Ball Bash, and the Dash for Danni help bring awareness to DIPG ( Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma) and money towards a cure. In addition to these fundraisers, there will now be something to permanently remember Danni right here on the fields. Danni Strong!