In August of 2008, Superintendent Paul Fitzgerald (Chief of the Bureau of Intelligence and Analysis for the Boston Police department) and his wife Leigh Anne faced the news that their daughter, Caroline, then 8-years old, had type 1 diabetes. She became a patient at Joslin Diabetes Center following her diagnosis.
The care that Caroline received at Joslin inspired the Fitzgeralds to start the Field of Dreams Wiffleball Tournament in 2010. This year’s Field of Dreams tournament will be held on Saturday, May 10 at the Boston Athletic Club, 653 Summer St., South Boston.
The tournament began as a way to promote diabetes awareness and raise money for research and clinical care. “We aren’t doctors, but we want to do what we can as a family to support the diabetes community,” said Fitzgerald. “The Boston Athletic Club opened a new indoor facility for wiffleball and we came up with the idea of Field of Dreams- we have the field, and now everyone can come and support the dream of curing diabetes.”
During the first year, the tournament raised $32,000. Each year since, they’ve been able to raise more and more, and last year they hit a total of $65,000. One hundred percent of the proceeds from this all-volunteer event go to Joslin Diabetes Center.
The event consists of two different tournaments- youth teams play in the morning, followed by adult teams in the afternoon. To support the event, you can visit the website to register a team, purchase raffle tickets or donate, or you can go and enjoy the event.
In addition to the wiffleball tournament, Field of Dreams will have activities for everyone, including face painting, food, music and a petting zoo.
The Fitzgeralds have shown their commitment to helping find a cure for diabetes through their efforts putting on the annual Field of Dreams tournament. Throughout the year, Paul and Leigh Anne work tirelessly to make sure it is a fun family day and successful event for a cause that is important to them.
“Awareness is a big part of what we do,” said Fitzgerald. “We want to get awareness of the challenges that people with diabetes face and do our part to find a cure.”
For more information, to register a team, or to donate to this event, please visit www.joslin.org/fieldofdreams.