April 30, 1995
The 2000 season will mark the fifth anniversary of the unveiling of the marble firemen's memorial plaque at Sam Bryen Fields, dedicated to three Pittsburgh area firefighters who had passed away tragically on Valentine's Day, 1995. That solemn occasion also marked the opening of the new concession stand and handicapped accessible restroom facilities, built during the offseason.
The year 2000 will also mark the occasion of the dedication of the concession stand itself to another fallen soul, Anthony Bucci, who was taken from us on Mother's Day, 1999. Anthony was only ten years old and a member of our Brookline baseball program. A memorial plaque will be mounted on the building, near the location of the firemen's memorial, prior to the beginning of the season.
Below is the article from the Brookline News and accompanying photos detailing the 1995 opening day ceremony. May the memory of Marc, Thomas, Patricia and young Anthony, as well as all of our other departed friends that appear on the pages of this Brookline website, live on in our hearts and minds.
Little League Opening Ceremony
On Sunday, April 30, the Brookline Little League completed construction and officially opened the new concession stand and handicapped restrooms at Sam Bryen Baseball/Softball Fields. State Representative Frank Gigliotti, Councilman Joe Cusick and Project Coordinator Stan Scalise cut the ribbon to officially open the ceremonies.
The opening ceremony was dedicated to the memory of the Pittsburgh firemen who gave their lives in the line of duty this past Valentine's Day. The idea of dedicating a plaque on the concession stand was suggested because the Brookline Little League received the final building permits on the day of the fire.
Pittsburgh Fire Chief Dickerson and Battalion Chief Kolenda, whose son Marc was killed in the blaze, were on hand along with other family members and fellow firemen to honor the fallen fire fighters. The plaque lists Marc Kolenda of Bon Air, Captain Thomas Brooks of Polish Hill, and Patricia Conroy of Oakland.
Some two hundred people were on hand for this ceremony during which a Pittsburgh fire fighter played taps on his harmonica, leaving no eye without a tear.
Project Coordinator and Brookline Little League Vice-President Stan Scalise would like to give special recognition to Councilman Joe Cusick for helping to find the namy contributors and contractors willing to lend a hand. Councilman Cusick and State Representative Gigliotti have both pledged grant monies to help defray costs. Mr. Scalise also recognized the parent volunteers who took this project so seriously and are honored on another plaque, located on an adjacent wall to the firemen's plaque.
Scalise commented that this project would not have gone anywhere without the support of both local and regional donors who gave time, labor and supplies. The cost of the construction for this concession stand and restrooms was originally estimated to be about $15,000, but thanks to the hard work and support of so many the project costs were cut drastically.
Although Memorial Day is on May 29, this ceremony could be deemed Memorial Day at Brookline Field, as firemen who gave the ultimate contribution and volunteers, who have given their time and hard work so that things would be a little better for Brookline kids were both recognized and honored. It is fitting that the skies were gray, but the rain did not hinder the ceremony.
* Reprinted from the Brookline News, May 1995 *
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