Gabby Hernandez is Campbell baseball’s biggest fan. If you’ve been to a game since 2016, you’ve probably seen her in the stands in her wheelchair wearing her orange Campbell jersey, with her family by her side, and smiles and waves coming her way from the players.
Now 13 years old, Gabby has struggled with numerous medical conditions since she was six months old and has been in and out of hospitals ever since. She has faced brain loss in the form of cerebral atrophy, respiratory failure a half-dozen times and has been diagnosed with a handful of other conditions.
When Gabby and her family began going to Campbell baseball games in 2016, a special bond was formed.
“Campbell baseball guys have given her something to look forward to and I strongly believe that they are part of the reason that she is still here and doing as well as she is,” Gabby’s mom said.
Gabby’s family has been faced with more difficult decisions than anybody should have to make, and have been witnesses to multiple miracles involving her health.
Gabby has many ambitions, hoping to travel when it becomes safer to see mountains, beaches, Disney World again (after previously going as part of the Make-A-Wish Foundation), and Australia. She also wants to go to an MLB game and throw out a first pitch at a baseball game.
As the bonds between Gabby and the team have continued to grow over the past five years, both at Jim Perry Stadium and the Johnston County Miracle League, the Camels are now looking for more ways to give back and help her family turn those dreams into realities.
This year, Campbell will host the first Turkey Derby on Dec. 3 at Jim Perry Stadium with 100% of the proceeds being donated to Gabby and her family.
Beginning at 2:30 p.m., fans can pay to get their cuts in at Jim Perry Stadium and take batting practice on the field. The team home run derby will begin at 4 p.m. With Campbell going deep 73 times last season and owning the nation’s fourth-best scoring offense, the home run derby should feature plenty of offensive power.
Donations can be made on Venmo to @CUBSBFundraising, or in cash at the stadium on the day of the event.
Fans can also sponsor a player for their chance to win prizes if their selected batter wins the derby.