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Linden to Raise Baseball Fences After Hartland Mom Loses Eye

Linden superintendent takes up collection, donates $1,500 to Jenny Kesson fundraiser.

Linden superintendent Ed Koledo felt shocked when he heard there was an accident at the Linden High School basbeball field that resulted in a after she was struck by a foul ball.

He was even more surprised when he discovered it was his good friend's wife.

"It was a shocker and terrible tragedy," Koledo said. "I can't imagine what she went through."

Koledo notified the staff and the school board and took up a collection of $1,500 that was donated during a fundraiser for Jenny Kesson and her family on March 30.

However, Koledo didn't stop there and wants to make sure similar incidents don't occur in the future. The school is in discussion to make the fences surrounding the field higher.

"We are defintely going to do it," Koledo said. "We are trying to decide whether to do six or eight foot. When you look at the incident, nothing could have stopped it but a higher fence."

Koledo said the incident has caused athletic directors in the entire Metro League to take a look at fence heights.

"It is creating quite a buzz around baseball," he said. "We are defintely going to do something. We are just not sure how high we'll go."

On March 24, Kesson went to watch her son play for Hartland against Linden. She bent over to roll her wet pants up. As she went to stand back up, Kesson’s whole life changed in an instant, as a line-drive hit went foul.

“It was such a freak, freak accident,” said Laura Simon, Kesson’s sister. “She stood up, a kid hit the ball-- a line drive-- and it hit her right in her eye.”

Kesson was rushed to University of Michigan hospital and went through eye removal surgery. She now faces months of facial reconstructive surgeries and rehabilitation. She underwent a surgery earlier this month and has been at home recovering, according to her family.

stringbob April 24, 2012 at 02:48 PM
That's a tough one, especially for the mom. Additionally, when I think about baseball games I've seen, and how high the fences are, there's obviously a mixed bag. On the highest level of the game where they hit the most, the hardest and the fastest foul balls, and where chunks of broken bat go flying into the stands, they have no protective fences, except behind the plate. I'm sure a bunch of folks get hit, but they know to pay attention, or else. In little league and school games, I've seen them as high as 8ft, In any event, if the school is bent on eliminating the possibility of anyone in the stands ever getting hit by a line drive foul ball, the answer is only a simple calculation away. Hold a string in a straight line from the head of the tallest kid to the head of the tallest probable fan who is standing at the highest possible point in the bleachers. Then, at the fence, measure from the ground to the string. To that dimension, add a couple of feet, to cover the jubilant fan who is jumping up and down. There's your fence-height. I hate clicking the <SUBMIT> button without addressing the real issue, but ...
Parent in Livingston County April 24, 2012 at 05:59 PM
Jenny, My best wishes and prayers for healing and recovery. I don't know you, but my son also played baseball for Hartland HS a few years ago. Know many are thinking and praying for you.
Llongley April 24, 2012 at 06:11 PM
This was a total freak accident that could have happened to anyone and yes it is the responsibility of the spectators to keep their eye on the ball, but if this could have been prevented by the fences being taller then what is wrong with asking all schools to raise the fences at the baseball fields in order to prevent another person from losing an eye, getting their faced smashed in by the ball or even worse, getting a tramatic brain injury or even death? The real issue is that this was a terrible injury that was not anybody's fault and hopefully will never happen again to anyone else because their will be taller fences at baseball fields to stop the ball, bat or whatever else can fling into the spectators.
stephanie pytlowanyj April 25, 2012 at 04:30 AM
Absolutely the fences need to be raised and probably to 8 ft high. A higher fence would have prevented this accident. This woman is lucky to be alive. The school district should count their blessings that she isn't suing them. Bottom line, however, higher fences can prevent injuries and possibly death so why not make them higher?
Lenny Haise April 27, 2012 at 03:21 AM
This was an unfortunate,freak accident. You cannot play baseball in a cage. Sometimes bad things happen.

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