Written and submitted by Sean Durkin Jr., Northborough
Anyone who knows my father, Sean Durkin, knows that on practically any given
afternoon, he can be found at Northborough’s Memorial Field. This has been the case since I can remember, for more than the past 20 years. He has contributed countless hours to the children of Northboro and the betterment of Northboro baseball. To list a few things: the lights, dugouts, fencing, scoreboards, irrigation systems, sheds, batting cages, flag poles, bullpens, and the very field itself were built in no small part by the help of my father and volunteers like him. He has coached from Little League up to Senior Babe Ruth. He is there spring, summer, and fall. Hell, he even plows now and then in the winter months. He has positively influenced the lives of hundreds of Northborough’s youth, an entire generation of Northboro baseball can say they have benefitted from his teachings.
On Tuesday, Oct. 2, while attending a planning board meeting, my father
was voted out of his seat as vice president of Northborough Baseball in a meeting held at the town library. As far back as the NBSA website records board meetings (Oct. 27, 2008) every single prior board meeting was held on the last Monday of each month, at the American Legion hall in Northborough. The board meetings were held with such consistency over the years that many of the long time supporters were left at the legion, with no such meeting taking place. Most of these supporters do not use Twitter or the NBSA website to determine the meeting time/location; there has never been a need to.
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I am not challenging the results of the vote, or asking for the move to be rescinded. I am asking people to question the direction of the new leadership of the Northborough Baseball Association.
I doubt that much of the current administration truly understands the work and
time my father has put into this organization, not for selfish reasons, but simply to better the children and therefore the community. I doubt many of the people casting votes will match a 20+ year service record, or stay around well after their children are through the program. I played my last game for Northborough baseball in August of 2005, and my father has only taken on more responsibility in the organization since.
The response from the literary team of Hodge and Blanchard makes me further question the direction of the new leadership of the program.
In what ways does this “new day” benefit the children of the program? If it is
truly “all about the kids” there are few who do as much for them as my father. I
challenge anyone to shed light on a legitimate issue with my father’s treatment of his baseball players. In return (as evidenced in various outlets as well as this website’s comment section), there are hundreds of children and families who have positively benefited for his love of the game, and moreover his love of the kids. In regards to the callous dismissal of Craig Murphy as a volunteer and as a coach, this also leaves a bad taste in my mouth. Mr. Murphy’s work exemplifies volunteerism at its finest, and I am proud to say that I know him. His countless hours of work on the field have made Memorial into on of the best fields in Massachusetts.
So if this is the “new day” of Northborough baseball, I am greatly disheartened. An administration lacking character, accountability, and respect to those who have contributed so much. An administration that deletes Twitter and Facebook users’ opinions in which they don’t agree. With such actions there is little need for a smear campaign. A new day, indeed.
I ask anyone who has met my father to be heard; it is not the way he has treated people and it is not right. Let the NBSA know that this is not how we treat members of our community!
In response to Mr. Forbush’s letter: for someone who does not take their issues
public you seem to be quite comfortable airing a personal conversation with Craig Murphy and sharing a simple petty incident with my father. By using this forum and your position to tell one sided accounts, you are in fact engaging in the very politics and gamesmanship in which you claim to be above.
Instead of describing this new day of Northborough baseball, endorsing the new vice president, or even giving an explanation of why my father was removed, you chose to write a letter defending the actions of the board. If the decision was made fairly and soundly, then why is there a need to defend it? Dave Lorenzi hit the nail on the head; a new location, record turnout, and absence of my father all seem to be a smoking gun to the questionable nature of this vote. I believe you greatly underestimated the impact my father has had on this community; demonstrated by the sheer number of those who will stand by his side in defense of his good will.
Lastly, to Hodge, Blanchard, Forbush, and the many commenters sharing their
thoughts and opinions—actions speak louder than words. Simply reiterating the
phrase “all about the kids” does not in any way benefit the children of Northborough.
Coaching them, mentoring them, and giving your time does; and no one has done that more than my father. It is no matter of opinion that my father has been involved heavily in nearly every field improvement that has been made, including the new scoreboard.
Some people don’t need to be seen or thanked. It is simply enough to contribute.