I'm truly sorry that it has taken so long to update - things have been busy with our golf tournament and our RUN FOR ISAAC! event at the Ottawa Race weekend. To add to all of that, we are planning our 1st Annual Isaac Foundation Gala for October 1st. To say the least, time has been short for updates.
However, I thought I would take a moment to write a few words about Roy and Brandy Halladay, two incredible people that took the time today to give Isaac and Gabriel a special day at the ball park.
Roy Halladay is, arguably, the best pitcher in Major League Baseball today. He has achieved almost everything that a professional baseball player could hope for, including pitching a very rare perfect game last month. However, it's not his skill and stamina on the playing field that makes Roy Halladay a special person; it's what he does off the field.
During his 12 years in Toronto, Roy and his wonderful wife Brandy created a special box at the ball park called Doc's box, which they used to host children from the Hospital for Sick Children on a regular basis. They would take the time to ensure all the kids were
comfortable - Brandy would sit and watch the game with the kids and Roy would arrive before the game, sign baseball hats, balls, and pose for photos with the children. It was at Doc's box that Isaac met Roy and Brandy for the first time. Brandy spent a lot of time with us and, I believe, fell in love with Isaac.
The following year, Roy decided to donate his Toronto Sportsman of the year award to The Isaac Foundation and Brandy organized a special on-field presentation to our organization. The Blue Jays showed our DVD on the big screen at the game and Isaac got to throw out the first pitch. More importantly, the boys got to see Roy and Brandy again. Since our visit to Doc's box, Isaac and Gabriel spent a lot of their time watching Roy "Holiday" pitch on television. They were thrilled to connect with Roy again!
Now that Roy is pitching for the Philadelphia Phillies, the boys have to listen to him pitch on the radio. However, Brandy was able to organize another special visit for Isaac and Gabriel, this time in Philadelphia. We travelled the long 8 hour trip yesterday and took in the game today. Isaac made Roy and Brandy a nice picture, and our Foundation made two special baseball jersey's for the Halladay's as a gesture of our gratitude for all they do for our son and the awareness they bring to his
disease and our Foundation.
Isaac and Gabriel waited on the field before the game
during batting practice. The entire time, they kept looking around for Roy as he shagged fly balls in the outfield. Finally, Isaac spotted
Roy coming toward him. He waited, and when Roy saw Isaac a huge smile came across his face. Isaac went running over and gave Roy a hug. From there, Isaac,
Gabriel, and Roy spent some special time together chatting and having fun. At the end, Roy let both Isaac and Gabriel pitch to him (it was something the boys REALLY wanted to do before they left). All in all, it was another special moment for our kids and I couldn't be more thankful to the Halladay's for making it happen.
The Halladay's are the essence of classiness and they truly personify what celebrities should be. They go out of their way, out of true love, to help those in their community that are struggling
and they work to make brighter days for those in need. They are kind, caring, and considerate human beings and they use their privileged position in life to make the world a better place. On the field, Roy goes about his
career and sets an example for others to follow by his hard work, determination, and sportsmanship. He's not in the media for his tantrums, his drug use, or his off field problems, much like many of the players you hear talked about in the Majors. Off the field, it is my hope that baseball fans in Philadelphia realize the real treasure they have in the Halladay family and appreciate and celebrate them in the fashion they deserve.
I know that Roy will produce on the field for the Phillies for many years to come; I hope he will even bring them another World Championship trophy, a Cy Young award, and more perfect games. But, at some point, the contributions that Roy will make on the field will come to an end, and he will immediately be remembered as one of the best pitchers in Major League History.
Long after baseball is over, Roy Halladay's legacy will live on in those he has connected with off the field. The kids that he has made smile, the families he has helped get through difficult times, and the ones he has inspired, Isaac included, will all be better people because of the difference he has made in their lives.
Thank you, Roy and Brandy Halladay, for taking the time once again to create a special memory for my kids. We appreciate your generosity and kindness, your care and compassion, and your genuine ability to make this world brighter for those around you.
Your kindness will never be forgotten.