“I think that’s what this week [Yankees Hope Week] is about, to recognize people who give back to the community, and for us it’s fun to be a part of,” Derek Jeter.
Through Career Gear Dion Thompson was able to secure a job at Daytop, a substance abuse center. “I remember my first suit they gave me. Brooks Brothers. Pin-striped. Changed my life.”
In its sixth year, Yankees Hope Week gives back to communities in need.
DKNY provided Coss Marte, Thompson and Clarke with suits.
DKNY — a sponsor of Yankee Stadium — lent goods for the cause.
“Derek Jeter picked it for me,” said Leon Clarke Jr., of his black, fitted suit from DKNY.
Yankee pitcher Hiroki Kuroda.
Yankee infielder Brian Roberts on being picked by his teammates as the best-dressed player on the team: “Me, they picked me? Well, I do like fashion. I enjoy it.”
“I feel like a star,” Rodney Gordon said. Once incarcerated, the 55-year-old resident of East New York now volunteers with Career Gear, which gave him his first nice suit.
Jenny Steinbrenner and Jason Zillo of the Yankees. The Yankees donated $10,000 to Career Gear.
“I am interested in fashion,” said Hiroki Kuroda measuring Dion Thompson, “and when were on the road we wear suits to get to the other cities.”
“I just want to say I feel like crying,” Norman Gaye said. “I used to walk to Yankee Stadium and watch batting practices with [players] like Joe Pepitone, Tony Kubek, Yogi Berra, and now I see you guys in person. It’s a moment for me.”
Coss Marte detailed going from making $2 million a year as a drug kingpin and serving four years in prison to now creating a positive “prison-based” workout program.
“I was really surprised when I saw the players. I had no idea. And to find that they had the time to give is really what it should be about,” said Rodney Whaley.