It’s official; supporters celebrate victory in naming Don Lay Flyer Field at Dixie High

Dixie High School's new baseball field now bears the name of former coach Don Lay, St. George, Utah, May 23, 2016 | Photo by Julie Applegate, St. George News

ST. GEORGE – After more than a year of contention, Dixie High School’s baseball field is now officially identified as Don Lay Flyer Field.

Merry Dawn Lay Johnson addresses the Washington County School District Board of Education, St. George, Utah, Sept. 15, 2015 | Photo by Hollie Reina, St. George News
Merry Dawn Lay Johnson addresses the Washington County School District Board of Education, St. George, Utah, Sept. 15, 2015 | Photo by Hollie Reina, St. George News

A sign was installed last week, and supporters — including Coach Don Lay’s daughter — are celebrating their hard-won victory. Lay was a much-loved and celebrated Dixie High School coach who died in 2011.

Originally the proposed name for the new baseball field was simply “Flyer Field,” but supporters of Lay rallied at school board meetings, created a Facebook page and launched a petition on Change.org that gathered 830 signatures.

“It is a nice honoring (of Don Lay’s memory) and I think, for all the people that worked so hard for it to happen, and for the history of Dixie High, clear back when,” Lay’s daughter, Merri Dawn Lay Johnson, said.

The Washington County School District Board of Education voted in September to retain the name of former coach Don Lay on the new field after months of controversy.


Read more: Board votes to retain Don Lay’s name on field, not unanimously


Johnson estimates at least 900 people participated in the effort.

Dixie High School's new baseball field now bears the name of former Coach Don Lay, St. George, Utah, May 23, 2016 | Photo by Julie Applegate, St. George News
Dixie High School’s new baseball field now bears the name of former coach Don Lay, St. George, Utah, May 23, 2016 | Photo by Julie Applegate, St. George News

“It was huge,” she said. “There was a lot of support, especially from alumni and people that knew Dad.”

Illene Hacker was one of the biggest supporters of retaining Lay’s name on the new field.

“I am happy to know that the school board voted to do the right thing in keeping our community’s history alive,” Hacker said.

Hacker is happy that hundreds of people across the country supported the effort and showed how much they care about tradition at Dixie High.

“It was always the correct choice to honor Don Lay. It didn’t hurt anyone to put up a small sign on the new field with his name on it. I appreciate the school board members who voted in support of the Lay family,” she said.

Email: japplegate@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2016, all rights reserved.

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