To The Editor:

Family, friends and community members are invited to celebrate the remarkable life of Eli Brookens at Dac Rowe Field in Waterbury on Saturday, July 27, from 4 to 7 p.m. Activities will include the dedication of a beautiful handmade bench that will overlook the ballfields where Eli spent many hours, planting a tree in his honor, a cookout, live music and hitting and kicking balls, which Eli did with a passion.

Eli was a gifted athlete and loyal friend who changed people’s lives. I and many others enjoyed watching him streak up the soccer pitch with his Harwood teammates in his trademark bright pink cleats, pitch on the baseball diamond or catch air on a powder day. But it was Eli’s infectious smile and his kindness that touched people the most. Eli was that kid who made everyone feel like his best friend.

The Eli Brookens Scholarship Fund has also been established that will fund scholarships for students to participate in a ski and ride program at Crossett Brook Middle School, a program that Eli loved. Funds will be used to pay for ski rentals and lessons for students in need. You can donate at

Eli was killed at age 16 in a car crash with a wrong-way driver in October 2016, along with four of his friends from the Mad River Valley.

I hope you will join us to celebrate Eli on July 27.

David Goodman

Waterbury Center, Vermont