John Boisitz will spend his weekend calling balls and strikes, calling runners safe or out, calling balls fair or foul.
Just like he did for years with his friend Stephen Spina
who was stabbed to death in his Richbell Road apartment on Sept. 17, 2007.
The Second Annual Stephen Spina Softball Classic will be held this weekend at Harbor Island Park, and Boisitz, one of the event’s organizers, is hoping the tournament will help call attention to his unsolved murder.
"Steve was a great guy," Boisitz said. "For him to be murdered, for this crime to remain unsolved, I still find it mind-boggling.
"We want to get his name out there so he doesn’t just disappear."
Spina was a father, a Larchmont postal worker and a local umpire. New York State Crime Stoppers (1-866-313-8477) is offering a reward of $12,500 for any information that leads directly leads to the arrest and conviction of the person responsible for his death. Part of the proceeds from the softball tournament will go toward increasing that reward. Part will be used to set up a scholarship fund for local kids who want to participate in youth sports.
"He was so involved with the youth programs," Boisitz said. "All the kids loved him."
Spina’s sister, Christine Foley, will again be traveling from Florida to attend.
The tournament will feature a total of 20 teams from throughout Lower Westchester County. Games are scheduled from 9 a.m. until 6 p.m. both Saturday and Sunday. The rain dates are July 31-Aug. 1. Donations for The Stephen Spina Memorial Fund will be accepted at the tournament or can be mailed to 200 Fulton Road, Mamaroneck, NY 10543. T-shirts, bracelets and koozies will also be for sale at the tournament, and hot dogs, hamburgers, soda and snacks will be available. There will also be a raffle with prizes such as tickets to Mets, Yankees and Giants games. After raising $10,000 last year, the goal is to raise at least that much this year.
Anthony’s Bar and Grill at 235 Harrison Avenue in Harrison will host a Saturday night gathering for players and fans. The cost is $25 per person for food and drinks.
The Village of Mamaroneck Police Department said the case remains open and under investigation.
"We will keep doing this until it is solved," Boisitz said.