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Port Jervis High School Softball Team Pitches in for Parkinson's

The Port Jervis High School varsity softball team is pitching in to help those living with Parkinson's next month, in recognition of Parkinson's Awareness Month.

Head coach John Faggione and his team are hosting a nonleague game at 4 p.m. April 9 at Port Jervis High School to benefit the Parkinson's Disease Foundation (PDF).

They will face off against head coach Angelo Matz and the Delaware Valley High School varsity softball team of Westfall, PA.

The cause hits close to home for both teams' head coaches, who have organized charity games in the past. Faggione, 41, is director of recreation for the City of Port Jervis. He was inspired to jump-start the benefit to honor his late father, who lived with Parkinson's disease for more than 15 years.

He is working with longtime friendly rival Matz, head coach of the Delaware Valley Warriors. Matz's late mother-in-law also lived with Parkinson's, a progressive neurological disorder for which there is no cure.

With a shared connection to Parkinson's disease and a passion for softball, their teams want to raise funds and awareness in their communities.

Working with the PDF Champions program, the grassroots fundraising arm of the Parkinson's Disease Foundation, the coaches hope the game can exceed a fundraising goal of $1,000 for Parkinson's research.

The nonleague softball game is open to the community. Players from both teams will work with their families, friends and neighbors to help raise donations and will wear special T-shirts to raise awareness.

"I think it's important for our players to understand the value of doing community events like this to give back," Faggione said. "As coaches, we're not only instructing about our sport, we're also teaching life lessons. We hope to attract as many people as possible to the game to promote the Parkinson's cause."

PDF Executive Director Robin Elliott said, "We are grateful for PDF Champions like the Port Jervis and Delaware Valley High School softball teams who are dedicated to funding the most promising research and raising awareness about the impact of Parkinson's. Their efforts to help PDF improve the lives and futures of the nearly one million people across the country living with Parkinson's are inspiring."

To support the Port Jervis softball game fundraising efforts, visit their personal donation page at http://support.pdf.org/PJSoftball.

For more information, contact PDF at (800) 457-6676, info@pdf.org or www.pdf.org.

Source Date: Apr 04 2013
Source Publication: Times Herald-Record
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