With one exception since 1929, Rye and Harrison have gotten together annually on the gridiron for an epic clash resulting in a year’s worth of bragging rights for the winner. The Garnets and Huskies will renew that rivalry October 17 in Harrison.
Six days earlier, however, the rival towns will converge on Feeley Field for a football game that goes beyond winning or losing. Rye and Harrison High School graduates of 1986, ‘87, and ’88 will play flag football to raise money and awareness for Charley’s Fund. The charity is named for 1988 HHS graduate Benjy Seckler’s son, who suffers from Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD). Children with DMD cannot produce dystrophin, a protein necessary for muscle strength and function. As a result, every skeletal muscle in the body deteriorates. Although Duchenne is the most common fatal genetic disorder to affect children, there is no cure.
The game came about after two 1987 Harrison graduates, Jay Caruso and Roseann Botte Giglio, reconnected through Facebook. When Caruso, currently residing in San Diego, found out his old friend had married Sal Giglio, a former Rye High football player – or “the enemy” as he jokingly referred to him – he got the idea to have a reunion flag football game.