Hortonville Village Board members unanimously approved renaming the girls’ varsity softball diamond to Gil Hart Memorial Field, at its monthly meeting Thursday, Feb. 5.
Jerry Van Hammond, President of Hortonville Youth Sports, and members of Hart’s family attended the meeting.
Van Hammond addressed the board in a letter on behalf of Hortonville and Greenville Youth Sports.
He said they would like to honor Hart for his contributions made to not only to the youth of the community, but also to the village itself.
Hart, who passed away unexpectedly last summer at the age of 63, was a longtime coach for Hortonville softball. He led the Polar Bears to 10 conference championships, several state appearances and their first ever, state softball title in 1996.
He was a well-respected educator in the district from 1989-2010.
Hart posted over 200 career wins as head coach for the Polar Bear varsity softball team.
Van Hammond told board members, “This special man was passionate in whatever endeavor he took on.”
In addition to the many positive relationships he made with young people in the community and in the schools, Hart made Hortonville softball a highly respectable program in the state of Wisconsin.
“Because of the success of his softball program, our young ladies and our community push to continue this expectation of excellence,” said Van Hammond.
The board agreed, and considers Hart an individual that contributed outstanding civic service to the village.
Village Administrator Patrick Vaile said the request was in accordance with village policy and procedure for renaming public facilities.
Signs officially renaming the west (varsity diamond) at Otto Miller Park to “Gil Hart Memorial Field” will be erected this spring.
Students at Hortonville High School will design and manufacture the signs.