Students, faculty, the board of trustees and community members gathered to honor Del Smith, a trustee emeritus of Linfield College.
After more than three decades of support, Smith was honored with the dedication of the softball field Nov. 12.
The board of trustees approved the naming of the field during its most recent meeting.
Smith is an active supporter of both Linfield and the McMinnville community.
Serving on the Linfield Board of Trustees for 34 years, Smith has been an influential person around the Linfield community.
With a quickly expanding softball program, the addition of a softball field with covered dugouts, a grandstand, an enclosed press box and batting facility creates the atmosphere needed for a nationally ranked team.
“Having a nice field is so important because it lets us use our facilities all times of the year. With the rainy weather, that’s a huge factor because it allows us to stay outside on the dirt as opposed to the fieldhouse, which just isn’t the same fielding balls and working on outfield skills,” sophomore Kim Chase said.
None of this would be possible without the help of Smith’s donations.
“Smith is a really gentle man, and has a big passion to support Linfield’s sports,” senior Sami Keim said.
She also said that Smith founded a program that encourages young coaches and players to join college athletics.
Other financial gifts Smith has given have helped in the building of the Rutschman Field House, the renovation of Helser Field and improvements to the Maxwell Field.
After many gifts to Linfield, Smith was inducted into Linfield’s Athletic Hall of Fame in 2005.
The softball team will not wait to put the newly dedicated field to use, as stated by Keim, who says that the team will begin training in January.
The field is being restored for the next softball season.
Kaylyn Peterson/Sports editor
Victor Zhu/Staff reporter
Kaylyn Peterson and Victor Zhu can be reached at email@example.com.