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Yankees Honor Newtown Community, Victims On Opening Day

Newtown ribbon on Yankees jersey (credit: Twitter/@YankeesPR)

Newtown ribbon on Yankees jersey (credit: Twitter/@YankeesPR)

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Tragedy In Newtown

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Prior to first pitch on Opening Day, the Yankees and Red Sox honored the town of Newtown, Conn., and the victims who were tragically killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School in December.

After pregame introductions at Yankee Stadium, with New York and Boston players still lined up on the chalk, a joint honor guard consisting of Newtown police and firefighters took the field. The victims’ names scrolled on the video board during a moment of silence.

The names were also shown on the YES Network.

“Since the day of the tragedy, our hearts and thoughts have been with those who were affected,” Yankees managing general partner Hal Steinbrenner said in a statement last month.

The AL East rivals also wore a ribbon patch on their uniforms to honor the victims and those affected by the horrific shooting. The design of the ribbon was also painted on the field in front of both teams’ dugouts.

“Months have passed, yet we are still trying to come to grips with this incomprehensible tragedy,” Red Sox principal owner John W. Henry said in a statement. “As our teams look to face each other on Opening Day, we will stand united in support of the families affected as we remember and honor those who were lost.”

Major League Baseball is also honoring victims of the Newtown tragedy.

For the first three days of the regular season, all players, coaches, umpires and other on-field personnel will wear a ribbon patch to remember the 20 first graders and six educators killed in the Sandy Hook shooting. Every game will also start with a moment of silence.

“The unimaginable tragedy that befell Newtown, Conn., will never be forgotten,” Commissioner Bud Selig said. “Major League Baseball, all 30 clubs and baseball fans from around the country and Canada offer our deepest sympathies and our unbridled support as the community continues to heal from this heartbreaking day.”

The patch features the official seal of Newtown, along with a black memorial ribbon and 26 stars to signify each victim.

The Yankees will remember and honor the Newtown community again in July.

On July 7, roughly 3,000 members of the Newtown community will be invited to the park when New York hosts the Orioles at 1:05 p.m. This day will be called “Newtown Day at Yankee Stadium.”

“We hope that bringing the families of Newtown together at Yankee Stadium later in the summer will give the community an opportunity to create new memories and aid in the difficult process of moving forward,” Steinbrenner said.

“The Yankees’ organization has supported our community in several ways since the tragic events of December 14,” Newtown first selectman Pat Llodra said in a statement. “Their generosity and compassion during this difficult time means a lot to all of us. We also would like to thank Commissioner (Bud) Selig, the Red Sox and Major League Baseball for this meaningful tribute to our community.”

Across town the New York Mets held a moment of silence for the victims of the Newtown shooting before the start of their Monday afternoon game against the San Diego Padres. The Mets also honored all of those affected by Superstorm Sandy and those who came to their aid.

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