Super Heroic: Yankees’ Bat Girl Defies Overwhelming Odds

Dayna Varano Beat Stage 3 Breast Cancer, While Helping Kids

WAYNE, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — On Thursday night the Yankees unveiled their newest bat girl. But it’s how she got to the mound — and her amazing fight for life — that is so moving.

Dayna Varano had been practicing for weeks and said the Yankees were going to have to yank her off the pitchers mound.

“Oh, I don’t really want to throw the ball. I just want to stand here, until you remove me, drag this out as long as possible,” Varano told CBS 2’s Cindy Hsu.

daynavarano Super Heroic: Yankees Bat Girl Defies Overwhelming Odds

(credit: Carlos Silva/WCBS 880)

This die-hard Yankees fan was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer at just 39 years old in 2007.  She fought the disease — through mastectomies, chemo and radiation. And during treatment she focused on fundraising for other families, even when friends asked her to wait until she was better.

“Cancer doesn’t wait for anybody. It didn’t wait for my kids to get big before they got their mommy and it’s not going to wait for me to feel better before it gets the next person,” Varano said.

Every closet in Varano’s home is filled with new donated toys for children that have a parent facing cancer.

“We put toys wherever they fit, so these toys are ready if I get a call,” Varano said. “Am I going to sit back or am I going to be heard? And that’s just my big-mouth personality and I started fundraising while I was in treatment.”

“This is what I can do for you and I’m going to do it and I’m going to get the results and she does and has made such a huge impact, I think. You can make a huge difference as one person and she has proved that,” daughter Alexa Varano said.

daynavarano2 Super Heroic: Yankees Bat Girl Defies Overwhelming Odds

(credit: Carlos Silva/WCBS 880)

Varano’s childhood friend, Kimberly Frost, nominated her for the bat girl contest after being blown away by her positive spirit.

“We did walks while she was ill. She was the one yelling back at me, ‘keep up! Keep up!’” Frost said.

Her youngest children, just 6 and 8, have grown up knowing all about the challenges of breast cancer. They said Thursday night’s honor for their mom means everything.

“I’m so happy. That’s all I can say. I’m so happy,” Luca said.

“I’m happier,” Siena added.

And so is their mother, whose latest scans, show she’s cancer-free.

“The honest thing I just tell girls is that you’re going to be okay. Is that the truth? Nobody can predict the future, but I can tell people wholeheartedly that many of us are surviving,” Dayna said.

“We’re close to curing breast cancer and eradicating this disease forever. I feel it. I know it. I sense it and I scream it. We just have to make it happen.”

Dayna Varano is one of 30 honorary bat girls — one for each Major League Baseball club.

Please offer your thoughts in the comments section below.

More from Cindy Hsu
  • Patty Liszewski

    Just turned on my TV and caught the news segment on Dayna Varano…honorary Batgirl for the Yankees contest winner. What an insoiration to so many battling cancer, beating cancer and to their families as well. Makes me feel even better about being involved in Relay for Life and other Cancer events. God Bless you Dayna…wish you all the best that LIFE has to offer you!!!

  • Constance

    With breast cancer month approaching and all the coverage of same I’m hopeful that the studio will include Dayna Varano in their awareness segments. This incredible and beautiful woman clearly raises awareness as well as hope.

  • pnky414

    As a fellow survivor of hers, and knowing her locally as well, I’ve heard her speak at benefits and she is one of the most captivating speakers I’ve ever heard. Even if she had one eye in the middle of her forehead, when she talks to people, they listen. She is very much a role model in our area.

  • fprl12

    ppl comment re her looks but c how much att her looks r bringing rt now to the subjt. i saw smthing else on her n she does amazing things for ppl.

  • Susan

    I have a great idea. Why can’t everyone focus on what she has done for breast cancer awareness and all the other charitable work she had done even outside of breast cancer. Such commentary regarding this lovely woman’s looks and being hot is both juvenile and inappropriate. I wish her a full life and much success in all her work.

  • nonuma

    Would love to see the station do a followup on her story. Beautiful girl.

  • mogo11

    Being smoking hot doesn’t hurt either

  • Cynthia

    Love that girl ! Dayna is such a sweet person, inside and out. She is incredible and I am honored to be a breast cancer survivor sister of hers. You will never meet anyone with a heart larger than Dayna’s! <3

    With all my respect and love,

  • Louise Ulriksen Viegas

    What an inspiration! What Dayna has done really makes you stop and think about the everyday things that we let get in the way of what is really important.

  • M. B. A.

    Good for her and I am happy for her and he surviving Cancer.
    I do hope more females are incorporated into the last male only
    bastion of sports Major League BB, let’s get with it guys .

  • Joe D'Fate

    She is a beautiful woman who deserves all the credit she is gets.

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