Kilar’s Field of Dreams back at-bat

Losing the life of a loved one is never easy to handle. The pain, suffering and sadness can be overwhelming at times.

For the Kilar family, it’s no different. But there are a few things that have somewhat eased the pain for the Kilars.

After losing a son and brother in Treyton to an alcohol-related car accident just over a year ago, the Kilar family has found solace in the rallying community surrounding them.

To help remember Treyton’s dream of being a Major League Baseball player someday, the Kilar family decided building a littler-league baseball field in Starin Park would be more than just a great way to keep Treyton’s memory alive.

“What continues to be a positive [a year later] is the fundraising effort,” Mary Kilar, Treyton’s mother, said. “As soon as you’re feeling sad about something, there’s always someone or something that touches your life.”

A perfect example of this was last Thursday when the year anniversary of the accident was approaching on Friday. Thursday was also when they learned their cause was accepted to be in the running for another Pepsi Refresh Project grant, Mary Kilar said.

The “Treyton Kilar Field of Dreams” project was accepted last January to compete for a Pepsi Refresh grant of $250,000. The top two vote-receiving causes were awarded the grant. Treyton’s field was passed up for second place on the last day votes were accepted.

Now, the field of dreams project has a chance at a $50,000. Voting is currently being accepted, and the top 10 causes that receive the most votes will be awarded the money.

“Obviously we’re very excited,” fundraising helper Amie Alvarado said. “50,000 is still a lot of money… [it’s] a potential to a lot. Although we were disappointed we didn’t win in January, we are still very excited about this opportunity and going to make the most of it.”

Mary Kilar agreed.

“We’re excited,” Mary Kilar said. “We tried to get in last month and we didn’t…We’re excited about the timing of it; we’re going to vote through the month of September and the university obviously has jumped on board again and the students will be able to text and Facebook vote.”

Alvarado said having the experience of going through the first grant competition process has taught them lessons that should help them earn a grant this time around.

Whitewater High School has hosted several fundraising activities, such as the teachers against students softball tournament at the end of May and a balloon release in memory of Treyton last week, Alvarado added.

Alvarado said several fundraisers are also planned for the coming months, including one on campus where the Warhawk baseball team will be playing the wheelchair basketball team in an exhibition basketball game.

On Oct. 16, a 5k run/walk will be held at Starin park with a children’s obstacle course and brat fry following the run.

Mary Kilar said the consistency of fundraisers that keep popping up is very meaningful to their family.

“We’re not even sometimes the ones that are spearheading these events,” Mary Kilar said. “People continue to do that because they want to see this project come true. They want to see this field be built.”

“That’s what’s been so special to us. It has not even been us doing it; it’s been people really taking this field to heart.”

In total, over $175,000 has been raised so far for the cause, which is planned to cost around $474,000.

The field will also be a great way to bring the community together and show what destructive decisions can do, Kilar said.

Overall, Mary Kilar said she is not only looking forward to all the fundraisers approaching, but also to a potential ground-breaking next spring.

“That field being built is just a symbol of Treyton’s memory and keeping that alive and also just continuing to educate on what destructive decisions do to people’s lives,” Mary Kilar said.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email