'He was a special boy.' Mets, Jets, community pay tribute to Little Leaguer who died

Long Beach City School District asked students and teachers to wear purple in Lazar’s memory and to raise awareness of epilepsy.

News 12 Staff

May 6, 2022, 9:30 AM

Updated 804 days ago

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Long Islanders honored 10-year-old Little Leaguer Lazar LaPenna one week after he died.
LaPenna's family says he suffered an epileptic seizure while he was playing in a baseball game last week.
Lazar LaPenna's father, Gregg LaPenna, who was coaching the game, says that the epileptic seizure was caused by his excitement over getting a hit.
"He was just so excited, looked over to me, I looked over to him, he smiled from ear to ear," Gregg LaPenna says. "I went to mark down the hit, I hear my son Gerry yell that Lazar is having a seizure."
He says Lazar LaPenna suffered from epilepsy for several years but lived life to the fullest.
"He was a special boy that just loved life, loved everything," Gregg LaPenna says.
Long Beach City School District asked students and teachers to wear purple in Lazar’s memory and to raise awareness of epilepsy.
On Friday, Lido Boulevard in Point Lookout was decorated with purple bows and flags in a tribute to Lazar.
“We know that the kids would be playing their games this weekend,” says Laura Shockley, of the Point Lookout Chamber of Commerce. “What happened was unthinkable and the idea was to have these children know that the town supports them, and we are here and united in this together."
Tributes have been donated at the ballfield and in front of businesses, including flowers and baseball items with Lazar’s jersey No. 9.
The New York Jets also honored Lazar La​Penna Friday by wearing jerseys and sweatshirts with "LaPenna" and No. 9 on them.
The New York Mets, who Lazar LaPenna loved, honored him by leaving three bats out of clubhouse.
"The emotional support is overwhelming, and it really touches me every which way and they keep on coming," Gregg LaPenna says. "It's beautiful."
If you want to support the LaPenna family, you can donate to their GoFundMe.


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