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article imageBaseball field built for children with disabilities vandalized

By Cynthia Trowbridge     May 24, 2011 in Crime
Southfield - Two weeks before opening day a baseball field built for physically and mentally handicapped children had been vandalized in Michigan.
A section of the infield of the $500,000 baseball field built in 2004 was damaged when it was spray painted with graffiti. The announcer's booth as well as the concession stand were also spray painted.
The Miracle League of Michigan provides a complete ballpark experience for handicapped children each summer. There is an announcer, uniforms and a concession stand. The dugouts, restrooms and the drinking fountains have all been designed for accessibility for the handicapped.
The biggest problem was the graffiti on the field which is made of virgin rubber pellets designed for traction for wheelchairs, walkers and crutches during the competition. MyFoxDetroit.com states to replace the field would cost about $60,000.
Solvents cannot be used to clean the field because it would be damaged.
detnews.com reports Vic Doucette an announcer for the games said, "I don't understand why anybody would do this. Nobody should have beef with us."
Two of the children who would have been affected by the vandalism was 10-year-old Caleb Derouin who was angry when he heard about what had happened. freep.com reports Caleb said, "I just thought it was foolish. "Did we offend anybody? I don't think so."
Marah-Lynn Daniels a 9-year-old with autism cried when her mother, Dawn Daniels, told her the news and asked, "Are we going to play?"
Daniels, who has four children in the league said, "They couldn't have known what they were doing. It was something done out of ignorance."
An announcement late on May 23 by the Miracle League reads-
VANDALISM FUND
"I'm pleased to report that as a direct result of today's media effort to help us repair damage to our field, funds have been raised to fix our surface.
The power of Channel 7 & 4 stories today, along with the News and Free Press set the bar high and viewers/readers responded in a very kind way.
We have raised enough for a patch or similar fix. Thank you to all who cared and donated. Updates on the progress will be available on our podcast (See below) and Facebook.
Please note: We have received the funds necessary to repair our field. If you care to do so, you may choose to donate to our league's general fund below
."
Now thanks to the generosity of many people about 240 children can continue looking forward to this season which starts June 4.
More about Special needs, baseball field, vandalized, Field, Baseball
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