Infinity Hit Club Honors Memory of Beloved Canton Little Leaguer

NBC Universal, Inc.

Growing up in Canton, one sport caught the eye of Willem van Gemeren.

"He loved baseball," said Bill Canny, one of founding members of the Infinity Hit Club. "He was a student of the game."

In August of 2005, tragedy struck when Willem and his father died in a plane crash. He was just 11 years old.

"Baseball was his passion and we always told him, 'you need a backup, you need a backup,' and look he's living his dream, looking down," said Willem's mother Betsy van Gemeren.

An oversized photo of Willem hangs on the wall at the Infinity Hit Club, a brand-new indoor practice facility in Canton.

"He's number eight, turn it sideways and you've got that infinity," said Canny. "That's how we will always remember him. He lives forever in our hearts and in our memories."

Willem is an angel in more ways than one.

"He was on the Angels baseball team so it kind of makes infinity even more of a strong word," said Betsy van Gemeren.

The founders of the Infinity Hit Club hope to provide an opportunity for young kids to train while also honoring Willem's legacy.

"It lets kids realize that death and dying is a beautiful thing," said Betsy van Gemeren. "It's not just a sad thing."

"We want every generation to come and enjoy this," added Canny. "This is something we hope keeps going."

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