The ninth grade class and many eighth graders move on from Fenn in June and spread out in all directions a few months later, attending a variety of secondary schools in the area. For one or two boys, the distance will be much further. Patrick Romeri is heading to Bradenton, Florida, to pursue his passion for baseball while attending IMG Academy, where there are more than twenty sports fields and a 5000-seat state-of-the-art stadium.
But along with the anticipation of an exciting move is the fear of having to make new friends and get used to new surroundings, a new school, and a very different part of the United States, where what we consider spring and summer weather dominates most of the year. “I’ll miss where I grew up,” Patrick said in his Senior Reflection, “and I’ll miss Fenn, which has been a good influence on me.” However, “we all have to accept change in our lives,” he added.
Though Patrick played football and basketball during his six years at Fenn, baseball has always been his favorite sport. A third baseman, Patrick eats, sleeps, and breathes baseball. His room is decorated with “tons of sports memorabilia,” he said in an interview after his reflection, including autographed photos of famous players and his baseball card collection.
When he’s not in a Fenn uniform, he is playing for the Southern California National Tournament Team, SoCalNTT. He was selected for the team to play in four tournaments this summer and will play in the USA Baseball National Championship in Jupiter, FL, followed by three tournaments in Georgia in July. When he is able, Patrick also plays for the Triple Crown Kings of the New England Elite Baseball League.
Patrick, who believes baseball is “more a mental than a physical game,” follows particular players more than the teams for which they play. Giancarlo Cruz Michael Stanton, a right fielder for the Miami Marlins, is one of his favorites.
At Fenn, Patrick, whose younger brother, Niti, is a Fenn sixth grader, was a member of the Youth in Philanthropy group and is a Big Brother to a Lower School boy who likes to play football with Patrick on the turf. Patrick’s favorite class is Latin, in part because “We have such a good time,” he said with a smile. Patrick has four older sisters and one older brother, and the family has two Cocker spaniels, Hollis and Harvey.
Patrick says he will miss his Fenn friends, some of whom he has had for six years. One of his favorite Fenn memories is the “mud football game”—it had rained earlier—that took place when he was in Ben Smith’s fourth grade class. “Everyone was dirty,” he recalled. “It was so much fun.”