Baseball field dedicated to student who fought leukemia, died

Joe Skinner's number retired Thursday night

By Jennifer Ortega - Reporter

ORLANDO, Fla. - It's a name that lives on at Bishop Moore High School, a name everyone will remember for years to come: Joe Skinner.

"What a tribute to have something in his name that everyone will get to see, but it's sad because he's not here with us," said his mother, Judy Skinner.

Joe Skinner, 17, died in May after battling leukemia for six months.

Last year, the baseball team retired Joe's number.

Thursday night, family and friends bowed their heads in prayer as the baseball field was dedicated in his memory.

"I know Joe is here, and I know he'll be here every game, and if Joe had described heaven, I think this would have been a vision for him," said his father, Scott Skinner.

Joe's sister took part in the ceremony, as a priest blessed home plate, followed by a moment of silence. 

"We've had such tremendous support from the school, the Catholic community, the baseball community -- there are just too many people to thank," Scott Skinner said.

Joe's parents told News 6 that losing a son never gets easier. 

"We just take each day as it comes and Joe would want us to," Judy Skinner said. "He'd want us to move on. We do what we have to do to keep his memory alive."

His family threw the first pitch at the field in a game their son loved so very much.

"Tonight is really a family night for Bishop Moore, that we can honor Joe, enjoy his memory and have a really good evening with baseball," said Thomas Doyle, the president of Bishop Moore. 

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