PAYETTE It was a big day in Payette Friday as they broke ground on a miracle field. The miracle field is a baseball field geared towards kids and young adults with special needs.
Retired Hall of Fame baseball player and the Pride of Payette, Harmon Killebrew, helped start other baseball fields in other states. Now he's the inspiration behind a baseball field in his hometown.
When it comes to baseball players, Harmon Killer Killebrew, is towards the top of the list. In 1984 he became immortalized in the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame.
His right-handed home run hitting record held up from when he retired in 1975 until 2009 when Alex Rodriguez surpassed him.
So this man knows baseball. He also knows every kid deserves a chance to play.
Harmon Killebrew was just not the Payette guy, he was everybody's guy, said Kerry Nyce whose daughter will play on the field.
Now almost three years to the day after he died of cancer, a group of kids broke ground on the Harmon Killebrew Miracle Field of Payette.
It's the only field that he actually asked to be named after him in his own hometown, said Craig Jensen, President, Miracle Field of Payette.
The field, when complete, will be a little different than a typical field. There will be no dirt or grass, rather a rubberized surface, completely flat.
It won't have any give to it so the kids can move with their wheelchairs, move with their walkers, their crutches, said Jensen.
Still far from complete, the idea of his 13-year-old daughter Emilie, who has Down syndrome, playing on this field is emotional for Kerry Nyce.
No more going out at halftime on the basketball court playing ball while the other teams are playing, the same way with baseball, playing before and after. She'll be a part of a team, wear the uniform making her feel important, said Nyce.
Emilie is just one of thousands of kids expected to use this field once it's complete.
Fundraising is now the number one priority. Several of the communities, businesses and individuals in the area are donating and raising money to ensure this dirt field becomes something much more. They ve raised and had donated over $80,000, but still need roughly $120,000 more.
I just hope everybody contributes and comes out and watches, and bring tissue, said Nyce.
The plan is to have the field open by summer 2015.
Once complete, the Harmon Killebrew Miracle Field of Payette will be the second Miracle Field in the West.
There are currently 250 Miracle League organizations that serve over 200,000 children and young adults with special needs.