Patrick’s Pals Celebrates 20 Years of Raising Money for Fragile X Research

Buckingham, Browne & Nichols School – At just 10 months old, the son of Watertown Weekly News anchor Jim Vershbow was diagnosed with Fragile X Syndrome. Fragile X is a genetic disorder that can lead to a range of developmental disorders, including autism.

Photo by Dan Hogan

Now 23 years-old, Patrick Vershbow attended the latest installment of the Patrick’s Pals 3-on-3 basketball tournament for the third year in a row. In past years, the noise and commotion in the gym was too much for Patrick to handle. With the help of his nurses and family, he’s now able to attend the tournament that is named for him.

Photo by Dan Hogan

Patrick’s Pals celebrated its 20th anniversary over the weekend at the Buckingham, Browne & Nichols School in Cambridge. The tournament raises money to support Fraxa, an organization that funds research on Fragile X and raises awareness about the disorder. Jim, along with some friends from High School, started the tournament 20 years ago to combine their love of basketball with supporting a great cause.

Photo by Dan Hogan

Each year, the tournament honors one person in the local athletic community who donates their time to visit the tournament and interact with participants. This year, retired Boston Globe sportswriter Bob Ryan was bestowed the honor. Past recipients have included Boston College Hockey Coach Jerry York, broadcasters Bob Lobel and Steve Burton, and former Patriots tight end Ben Watson.

Photo by Dan Hogan

This year, the tournament was given an even more authentic feeling with Patriots play-by-play broadcaster, Bob Socci, announcing team names and players before each matchup.

Patrick’s Pals remains the largest fundraising event for Fraxa.

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Produced by Dan Hogan, News Producer
Filmed on June 4, 2016

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