This article deserves re-reading on today of all days

Tagged , ,

Honor And Remember David Bachner

To the members of the ad hoc naming committee

David is honored and remembered with the over 2500 members of the “IN LOVING MEMORY” Facebook site
David is honored and remembered with the thousands of ‘unhittable’ pictures on the “Unhittable Across The Globe” Facebook site.
David is honored and remembered with the thousands of ‘unhittable’ t-shirts and hoodies worn by people who can tell you what the shirt means when you ask.
David is honored and remembered with the charity work that Steve and Rhonda perform on behalf of The David J. Bachner Memorial Fund.

There are so many ways that people who knew David or know of David honor and remember him every day. Whether it’s drawing a 16 on the back of the mound before pitching or selecting his number 16 and letting Rhonda and Steve know via Facebook they were thinking of David.

David is honored and remembered with the number 16 on the North Varsity baseball field home dugout.
David is honored and remembered with the embroidered 16’s on the North baseball teams hats.
David is honored and remembered with a monument with a bronze plaque describing his achievements which is located at the North Varsity baseball field pitchers bullpen.

Today is the 5th Angelversary of David’s passing.  Saturday David was honored and remembered by his family and friends at the field.

Please honor and remember David by naming the North varsity diamond the David J. Bachner field.

Thank you,

Tim Hitchings
8 Burr Court


Tagged , , ,


To the members of the ad hoc naming committee

On March 12th 2012 the Name the field “Bachner Field” petition reached 1500 signatures.

That petition contained words of eloquence by Bob Boyce who was the coach of the Varsity Baseball team when David Bachner played at North.  Bob Boyce wrote it best and wrote it first.

Everything that I write tries to reflects those sentiments that Bob Boyce expressed so well.

The petition is quoted below.

Please name the North Baseball Diamond the David J. Bachner Field.

Thank you,

Tim Hitchings
8 Burr Court

Text from the petition to Name the field “Bachner Field”

Why Bachner Field?
On August 11, 2009 the West Windsor-Plainsboro community suffered one of its most traumatic losses with the death of David Jordan Bachner. Not only was David one of the most prominent baseball players in the history of the school district, setting many records that will unlikely ever be matched, he was also an outstanding young man and true role model of what it means to be a student-athlete.

Since that tragic date there has been a great deal of discussion regarding naming the baseball field at High School North “Bachner Field.” To this date, that has not been done. I would like to make the case of why it needs to be done.

First and foremost, people need to stop blaming school administration for the field not being named in David’s honor. If it were solely up to the likes of Marty Flynn, Mike Zapicchi, Victoria Kniewel, and even most Board of Education members, the field would likely be named in David’s honor. These are outstanding administrators and upstanding people. The hold-back in the process is simply current policy which basically prohibits naming school district facilities (such as baseball fields) after people. I am not going to get into the facets and bases of such a policy, other than to say I understand their position.

Naming something like a baseball field, football stadium, or gymnasium is a major decision. I believe it needs to be done on a case by case basis. There is no “blanket policy” which could possibly handle every permutation of events that might call for such an honor. Naming the baseball field after David Bachner would be his legacy, and he has more than earned the honor.

Forget the 250 career strikeouts (135 in one season), the sub 1.5 career ERA, and sub 1.1 ERA in his senior season, and his many wins and various no hitters, David represented what it meant to be a baseball player in the WW-P North baseball program. Beyond talent, David was a solid student, outstanding citizen in the school community, and a person that all students looked up to and idolized, not because he was such a great ball player, but because he was there for them and he looked out for everyone. When a player walks onto the field at North, they should be aware of what it means to be a player in the program. When you play at Bachner field for WW-P North, it is expected that you will play the game, and live your life the way he did, making your own legacy.

When you walk into Ewing’s “Emil Wandishin” gymnasium to play basketball, you realize the place has history, and the program predicates its practices, at least in part, to the outstanding man Emil is. When you play baseball at Ewing’s “Andy Greener” field, similar feelings and emotions come into play regarding what a great coach and person he is. I could go on with examples, but will instead get to my point.
Fields (especially when only used by one team), gymnasiums, and football stadiums should ALL BE NAMED at some point in time. The person the facility is named after ought to be a proper representative of the pride, honor, excellence, commitment, and other qualities that your program is all about. When it comes to WW-P North baseball, and the outstanding teams we have had over the past decade or so, there is no better representative of what it is all about than David Jordan Bachner.

I have heard a great deal of feedback regarding precedence, and naming of other facilities.
Let me be clear on my point, naming the baseball field “Bachner Field” is not simply a matter of losing a great player, and trying to extend his legacy. I believe the field needs to be named, and that name ought to indicate what it is all about to be a baseball player at WW-P North. It would not be a slight to other deaths of students that have occurred, and it does not set any precedent for naming anything else (it must be case by case, and carefully thought through and discussed).

I could give you two other examples of fields that should be named already, and it has nothing to do with death at all, it is all about legacy and representing the program:
The football stadium at WW-P South should be “Walker-Stuart Stadium”. The baseball field at WW-P South should be “Don Hutchinson Field.” The reasons for this follow the same argument I am giving for naming the baseball field at High School North
“David Bachner Field.”

I trust that the powers to be will look at this situation carefully and understand why the field needs to be named, and also realize that other possible valid namings are out there. Take it on a case by case basis, carefully research and discuss the pros and cons, and make a decision from there. I would love to discuss my side with any such committee that would be looking into the naming of “David Bachner Field.”


Bob Boyce : Mathematics Teacher, Head Girls Basketball Coach, and
former Head Baseball Coach (all at WW-P North HS)

Tagged , , ,


Date 2014-07-30 10:14

To the members of the ad hoc naming committee.

Please name the North Baseball Diamond the David J. Bachner Field.

At the request of district officials, Gerri Hutner, a district spokeswoman, provided my name to the reporter at fox news for the following article.
Please note that I was not interviewed nor contacted by the reporter. My quotes were lifted from my blog
I note the article contained a number of quotes by Rhonda Bachner directed towards the School board and the process. I can understand how Rhonda Bachner has some strong feelings over the length of time between her son’s death, the first request to name the field, and the 5 year requirement. It’s apparent that the author of the article chose to highlight those feelings.

I was not there 5 years ago when the first request to name the field was made and Steve and Rhonda were told they would have to wait 5 years. David Bachner was not my son. The 5 year wait didn’t make it any easier for Rhonda and Steve Bachner and every day of the rest of their lives they endure without their son. But, I’m not bitter about the 5 year process. I believe that the 5 year requirement has created a measured ability to consider requests under less heated and emotional circumstances. No matter how difficult it may be to have to wait, the true support for David Bachner will demonstrate the size and love the community has for the Bachner’s and why the field should be named.

I appreciate the honor of being named by the board as the person that has brought the naming matter for your deliberation. I will say that I’m not the only individual, but just one of many concerned citizens who follow the Bachner memorial facebook group and who have approached the Board of Education concerning the Bachner field naming. I have tried to help the Bachner’s as the 5 year anniversary of David’s Angelversary approaches by writing letters to the board of education and on my blog in support of naming the field after David J. Bachner. I have read my letters at board meetings that expressed my thoughts as to why the field should be named. I have strong feelings about the nature of talent, sportsmanship, dedication both on and off the field and the community of baseball. From what I have learned of David and his support and his ongoing legacy no one is more deserving of the honor of having the North Varsity baseball field named after him.

I welcome your decision as I’m confident that you will view my letters and the letters of other concerned members of the West Windsor community, the baseball community, the North baseball community as an overwhelming vote of confidence that naming the North Baseball Diamond the David J. Bachner field is the right thing to do.

Thank you,

Tim Hitchings
8 Burr Court

Tagged , , ,

WW-P Board of Education considering official request to name the High School North baseball field

The below was received in an e-mail on Wednesday July 23rd.  Please read and e-mail the address provided.  Please attend one of the forums.  I’ll be attending August 12th.  I’ll be wearing my Unhittable shirt.  I hope we can fill the auditorium that night.

“The WW-P Board of Education Administration & Facilities (A&F) Committee is considering an official request to name a baseball field at High School North. [The process for naming a facility can be found in Board Policy 7250.]

To begin the process, the Board of Education A&F Committee appointed members of an ad hoc naming committee: Gerard Dalton, assistant superintendent, Pupil Services/Planning; Jean Marie Seal, director of Athletics; Michael Zapicchi, High School North principal; Michele Kaish, Board of Education; High School North baseball Booster Club representative; High School North PTSA member; and WW-P community member.

The ad hoc naming committee will review Policy 7250, request community input via open forums and electronic communications, and prepare recommendations for the A&F Committee.

The ad hoc naming committee will be hosting two open public forums to hear suggestions for names for the High School North Baseball Field and comments on the naming process. These forums will be held on:

·         August 12, 2014, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at High School North

·         August 18, 2014, at 12 noon at High School North

For those who are unable to attend these meetings, please send comments and suggestions to All these comments will be reviewed by the ad hoc naming committee.

On August 19, 2014, the ad hoc naming committee will deliver a report to the A&F Committee; in turn, the A&F Committee will present the findings at the Board of Education Meeting on August 26, 2014. The Board of Education is expected to take action on a recommendation at its meeting on September 23, 2014.”

Tagged , , ,

Why Name A Baseball Field?

461421_10151008308950337_1022316788_o (2)

To the members of the West Windsor-Plainsboro Regional School District Board of Education:

Anthony Fleres (
Rachelle Feldman Hurwitz (
Louisa Ho (
Rachel Juliana (
Michele Kaish (
Richard Kaye (
Dana Krug (
Scott Powell (
Yu “Taylor” Zhong (

The Babe Ruth baseball field at West Windsor Community Park is named after Christopher M. Ciuffani. Chris was a West Windsor boy who played through 12 years of age with the West Windsor Little League, and was tragically killed in a car accident in January 1994.

The Little League field at Cranbury Village Park is named after Peter Zanghi who organized the first Cranbury Plainsboro Little League and is still an active sponsor of Little League teams.

Thomas R. Grover Middle School is named after Thomas R. Grover who was killed in action at the age of 22 while serving in the Army during the Vietnam War. He was a graduate of the school district.

J.V.B. Wicoff Elementary School is named after John Van Buren Wicoff who was a lifelong resident of Plainsboro, he was the chairman of the Plainsboro school board for 31 years and served on the Plainsboro Township Council.

Maurice Hawk Elementary School is named after Maurice H. Hawk of one of the oldest families in West Windsor.

As I worked with Google to try to compile this short list of named buildings and baseball fields in our area I was struck with how difficult it was to find information on the internet that describes the how/why of naming these locations as I progressed to the oldest named facility. I imagine there are plaques at each of the schools that provide more history on each school’s names. I’m surprised that we don’t have any history page on our school sites that provides information on why a school has a name. When the North Baseball Diamond is named the David J. Bachner Field I hope to be able to add an appropriate reference in Wikipedia so that anyone in the future can learn the how/why the field was named.

Naming brings humanity to a thing. Naming brings history to a thing. Naming provides a destination that can be remembered.

By naming the North Varsity Field the David J. Bachner Field we can connect the current marker outside the pitchers bullpen with a place. We provide visiting baseball teams with a location they can easily remember. As the visiting players walk into the area they’ll see the Bachner marker and if the players pause to read they’ll understand why the North varsity field was named for him.

I can imagine the decision to name the field is difficult and requires a great amount of thought and discussion as to the impact. I don’t know of any other naming situation that has taken place in this area in recent times. I hope you will consider the worthiness of this naming request on it’s own merits. I hope that choosing to name this field will not be dismissed in fear that a ‘flood’ of similar requests will appear in it’s wake. From my brief conversations and listening to board members at a previous meeting I’m feeling confident that you are weighing all arguments that have occurred over the last 5 years concerning this request. Thank you so much for your service.

From everything I’ve read and from all of the people I’ve talked to, David represented the ideals of the North baseball program both on and off the field. His marker at North doesn’t just describe his athletic accomplishments. It describes the type of person he was and the impact he had both on and off the field. Let’s complete his impact to North.

Please name the North Varsity Baseball Diamond the David J. Bachner Field.


Tim Hitchings

Tagged , , ,