Military vets amputee softball team to play in Moriches on June 15


The USA Patriots military veteran amputee softball team will make a return visit to Moriches Athletic Complex for a doubleheader on Saturday, June 15.

The Patriots, whose roster includes players from across the country, will take on the Long Island All Stars at 12:15 p.m., followed by a game against the Long Island Senior All Stars at 2:30 p.m.

One of the USA Patriots, Matias Ferreira, is from Suffolk County. Ferreira, a Marine Corps veteran, lost both legs in Afghanistan and is a Suffolk County police officer.

The Patriots will arrive at the field with a motorcycle escort. Opening ceremonies start at 11:30 a.m., in which several groups are scheduled to participate, including the Blue Star Mothers, Boy Scouts, Long Island ABATE, Long Island Express Girls FastPitch, Paws of War, SAR Flag and Warrior Ranch.

The USA Patriots formed in 2011. It will be the team’s 10th visit to Long Island, said Joe Bartumioli, volunteer coordinator. Past visits have drawn more than 1,000 spectators, he said.

The team has been featured on the “Today” show and HBO’s “Real Sports” with Bryant Gumbel

Bartumioli said fans will be inspired by the players, who remain upbeat despite the challenges they face.

“They do nothing but smile,” Bartumioli said. “It’s not a dour occasion. What you’re celebrating more than anything is the human spirit.


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