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Official Website of the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation

Jamaica Bay and the Rockaways

Rocco Torre Ballfields

This text is part of Parks’ Historical Signs Project and can be found posted within the park.

These ballfields were dedicated in memory of Rocco Torre (1927-1996), veteran police officer and baseball lover, by Mayor Giuliani on August 15, 1997. The fields were first opened to the public on April 29, 1979 and are maintained by the Joe Torre East Highway Little League (formed in 1995 as the East Highway Little League) in cooperation with Parks & Recreation. Rocco Torre was one of three baseball-playing brothers whose neighborhood legacy began with youthful games in Marine Park, and lives on through the children who bring the sport to these fields today. Born on June 7, 1927 and a lifelong resident of Brooklyn, Torre was raised in Flatbush with his sisters Rae and Marguerite, and brothers Frank, former first baseman for the Boston Braves, and Joe, the manager of the New York Yankees who guided the team to their 1996 World Series victory after a long career as a major league player and manager.

Rocco Torre, the eldest brother, was recruited by the Brooklyn Dodgers for his talent as a pitcher. Instead of becoming a professional athlete, however, he obeyed the wishes of his father, Joseph, by joining the Navy to serve his country during World War II. Torre, who attended James Madison High School and St. John’s University, followed in his father’s tradition by becoming a police officer. After patrolling the streets of New York City for twenty two years, Torre spent a decade working for the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency, until he retired in 1983. He extended his commitment to fighting drug use to helping its victims by volunteering at a drug rehabilitation center in Manhattan. Rocco Torre died of a heart attack in Brooklyn on June 21, 1996.

Directions to Jamaica Bay and the Rockaways

Know Before You Go

BeachesRockaway Beach and Boardwalk

For your safety, the beach is closed from Beach 91st Street to Beach 102nd Street due to erosion. Other areas of the beach remain open, along with the entire boardwalk, all concessions, and restrooms. The closest beach access is available at Beach 86th and Beach 103rd Streets.

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