Burrell Field at South Shore Christian Academy

Getting an email recently from a woman in Kentucky who remembered my Grandmother and Grandfather for the variety store that they owned in Weymouth, I wanted to capture an article that was written about my Grandfather upon the dedication of a baseball field at South Shore Christian Academy.

By RYAN MENARD
The Patriot Ledger

WEYMOUTH – When firefighters made late-night rescues, Malcolm ‘‘Brother’’ Burrell would trudge to his store and fire up the coffee machine.

After World War II, struggling veterans would come home from Burrell’s Variety Store to find groceries they did not pay for.

And when the local softball teams needed a place to play, Burrell built a field in his back yard, and he flooded it in the winter so neighborhood children could skate there.

It was in that spirit of giving that his daughter unveiled a soccer field at South Shore Christian Academy yesterday.

‘‘My wish, my prayer this morning for all of you at this school, is that you will grow up to be the kind of person my dad was,’’ Marinda Bennett said at a ribbon-cutting ceremony.

The Burrell family donated $50,000 toward a project that replaced a section of the school grounds formerly known as ‘‘the dust bowl’’ with a spacious, lush playing field.

Years ago, Burrell was a charismatic fixture in East Weymouth. He would watch over children at the store while their parents were at work and bring hot coffee to police officers stuck on wintertime traffic duty. And Burrell’s offered the biggest ice cream cones in town.

Burrell opened the store in 1930. It was where Niko’s Restaurant is now.

After he died in 1981, a corner in Commercial Square was named for him.

Burrell, a devout Christian and a marathon runner who once placed second in the Boston Marathon, would have approved of the field project, Bennett said.

‘‘I am grateful for the values my dad taught us,’’ she said. ‘‘His compassion and generosity were boundless.’’

Interim academy headmaster Martin Trice said the field, donated on the fifth anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, would give the students reasons to celebrate on a grim occasion and to give back as Burrell did.

‘‘I want us to remember on this moment, this day of remembrance, that this is a time not only of remembrance but a time of blessing, so we can in turn give blessing to others,’’ Trice said.

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