In a tradition that started after the attacks of September 11, the New York Mets today announced they will honor New York City First Responders by wearing hats from the city agencies during batting practice and the National Anthem prior to the 7:10 p.m. game against the Washington Nationals Tuesday, September 11 at Citi Field.
“We want to thank Major League Baseball, Commissioner Selig and Joe Torre for their support of honoring these agencies for their heroic actions that day,” said Mets COO Jeff Wilpon.
The Gies family will throw out the ceremonial first pitch to honor fallen FDNY hero Ronnie Gies, of Squad 228 in Maspeth, Queens, who lost his life on September 11. Carol, and her sons, Tommy, Ronnie and Bobby will be on the mound for the first pitch. Tommy is a fireman with Ladder 147 in Flatbush, Brooklyn, Ronnie is a fireman with Ladder 175 in East New York, Brooklyn, and Bobby recently took the test to become a fireman.
“I always tried to be at Shea or Citi Field on 9/11, because those were always our family’s fondest memories,” said Carol Gies. “My husband was a gigantic Mets fan, as is my entire family. We all think happy thoughts when we are at a Mets game.”
The Gies’ will be joined at the game by 50 members of their family.
Earlier today, Mike Baxter, Dillon Gee and Bobby Parnell spent their day off paying tribute to those who lost their lives on September 11. The players visited the 9/11 Memorial and stopped by FDNY Engine 10, Ladder 10 on Liberty Street across from the World Trade Center site. They then headed to the USS Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum and worked alongside hundreds of volunteers assembling bicycles that will be given to children of parents serving in the military as part of the 9/11 Day of Service and Remembrance program.
Earlier this year, Johan Santana, the Johan Santana Foundation and the Mets Foundation provided seed-money to Tuesday’s Children to create a new initiative for Spanish-speaking members of the September 11 community to enhance services and programs for the underserved community. The Mets funded Tuesday’s Children’s First Responder Alliance Mentoring Program in 2011, a new mentoring program for families of First Responders.
The Mets have been supporters of Tuesday’s Children since its inception in 2001, hosting families at games and holding player meet and greets. Tuesday’s Children is a non-profit family service organization that has made a long term commitment to every individual impacted by the events of September 11, 2001 and those who have been impacted by terrorist incidents worldwide. Since 2001, Tuesday’s Children has promoted healing and recovery by strengthening family resilience, providing individual coping and life management skills and creating community through programs, mental health support and family engagement opportunities.