The James Volpe Foundation is holding their 5th annual winter dinner dance to help raise funds to provide scholarships to Jackson Memorial and Liberty High School senior athletes in honor of the former Jackson Memorial baseball star who passed away in a May 2011 car accident.

Those close to us remain close to us when they pass when we keep them near our heart and live life in the goodness that they brought and shared with the world.

The memory of James Volpe lives on nine-years after a tragic car accident in Manchester Township and his memory will continue to live on for years to come as he is remembered by many across the Jersey Shore.

Each year James' parents and close friend John Mucia and other family and close friends put together a series of fundraisers to award Jackson High School student-athletes, who win the essay contest, with a scholarship to continue playing sports at a high level in the classroom and on the field the way James did while he was squaring up a fastball or throwing to first base.

"For the scholarship, students have to apply for that. There's a brief synopsis on who James was and then students have to submit an essay to their guidance department and explain to them and to us as to why they believe they deserve the scholarship," Foundation Vice-President John Mucia said. "To be honest, some of those submissions are hard to get through and tough to read, some of them are really, really nice. A lot of these kids didn't even know James so it's nice to read some of those essays and know that he (James) is still making some type of impact and impression in the community almost ten years later."

These fundraising events are not just about awarding scholarships but talking about James with his family and friends, having a good time dancing or laughing the way James did or having a good meal.

"People have become aware of who James was even if they didn't know him personally, especially through our other events," Mucia said.

As the James Volpe Foundation prepares for the winter dinner dance, golf outing and wiffleball tournaments in 2020, they're asking for your support to help keep the mission going.

The annual winter dinner dance takes place on Saturday February 29 from 7:00-11:00 pm at the Knights of Columbus building on Bartley Road in Jackson Township.

If you can't make it to the event, donations are excepted at any time.

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