Babylon Town Supervisor Rich Schaffer recently honored North Babylon resident Mike Filippone, who recently set the Guinness World Record for batting baseballs. Filippone broke the record Father’s Day weekend when he batted baseballs for 24 hours straight at Phelps Lane Park in North Babylon. Filippone had previously attempted to break the record in 2009 and 2011. Also in attendance for the ceremony were Deputy Supervisor Tony Martinez, Councilwoman Jacqueline Gordon, Town Clerk Carol Quirk, and Receiver of Taxes Corinne DiSomma.
“With his 24-hour batting marathon, Mike Filippone has become a local hero,” said Supervisor Schaffer. “Not only did he make a place for himself in the Guinness Book of World Records but he also supported a great cause while doing so. I congratulate Mike for this tremendous accomplishment.”
Proceeds from Filippone’s marathon went to the Dan Gambardella Memorial Fund. The fund was founded by Linda Gambardella in memory of her husband, who was killed by a drunk driver in 2011. As part of the fundraising efforts, onlookers were invited to pitch a bucket of balls to Filippone. It is estimated that close to $7,000 was raised for the fund over the weekend, which supports families who suffer tragedies similar to the Gambardella’s.
Deputy Supervisor Tony Martinez said, “After unsuccessfully trying to break the record in 2009 and 2011, the third time was a charm for Mike. Having been on hand to throw out some of the first pitches, I was proud to see our community come together to rally around Mike in his quest to break the record and raise money for the Dan Gambardella Memorial Fund.”
As part of their efforts, the Dan Gambardella Memorial Fund distributes bracelets also known as “Bands for a Promise,” to encourage sober driving. For more information on the Dan Gambardella Memorial Fund, visit www.dangambardellamemorialfund.com.
Pictured with family members and volunteers are Town Clerk Carol Quirk (fifth from back left); Receiver of Taxes Corinne DiSomma (sixth from back left); Councilwoman Gordon (seventh from back left); Deputy Supervisor Martinez (eight from back left); Mike Filippone (eight from back right); Linda Gambardella (seventh from back right); and Supervisor Schaffer (back right).