Tara Layne Camp allows dad to connect with his daughter once more

Published 5:59 pm Thursday, July 27, 2023

Camp director Danny Layne address the participants at the Tara Layne Memorial Softball Camp. The camp was for pitchers and catchers and was orchestrated by Layne to raise money for the Tara Layne Memorial Scholarship to benefit local female student/athletes. (Tim Gearhart Sports Photos/For The Ironton Tribune)

The Beatles have nothing on Danny Layne,

Using a tape made by John Lennon that he left for bandmate Paul McCartney, the two remaining members of the Beatles — Ringo Starr and McCartney — are using modern technology to combine all four members of the group and make one final record.

The record will include both deceased members Lennon and George Harrison.

Email newsletter signup

Danny Layne isn’t making a record, but he is using his late daughter to make an impact on the lives of local female student/athletes.

Danny’s daughter Tara died at the age of 36 from a blood clotting disorder. Because it was such a rare disease, she had been going to the Cleveland Clinic.

“She was so brave and strong with her battle,” said Danny.

Tara Dawn Layne Odishoo died at the age of 38 on June 25, 2021 leaving behind her husband Daniel Odishoo and mother Teresa Layne and her father and coach, Danny Layne.

Tara was an outstanding softball pitcher for the Lady Pointers who went on to pitch for Berea College. Danny decided to take his daughter’s talent and create a memorial scholarship in her name. He recently held a pitchers and catchers softball camp with the proceeds going toward the scholarship.

Each year a female senior athlete will receive a $1,000 scholarship and to each recipient I get to share Tara’s love of the game as we did in our camp. It’s a powerful message,” said Danny.

Tara Layne gave up 22 walks in the first game she pitched. Five years later as the starting pitcher for South Point, she ld the team to the regional tournament  and walked a total of 18 batters for the entire season including the tournament run.

The camp and scholarship are actually a way in which Danny and Tara are working together one more time in a father/daughter project.

“That’s what it is completely,” said Danny,

“There are days I’m absolutely broken. My heart hurts every day for her. But it’s like a friend told me shortly after Tara’s passing. God gave you this mountain to show others it could be moved. I know in my heart my strength comes from God and I also know that’s why I got back into coaching. I had to reconnect to help kids where I can. That’s why I put this camp together, to give back to our community.”

One of the instructors for the camp was current Ohio Bobcats pitcher Keegan Moore, the former two-time All-Ohio standout for Ironton.

“Keegan was awesome. She really touched my heart when she donated part of her pay back to Tara’s scholarship,” said Danny.

After having coached high school baseball and softball as well as little league at South Point, Danny had retired.

Or so he thought.

A friend commented on how much Danny had meant to the people of South Point and how the people of Ironton had missed out on having him as part of their athletic program when he had moved.

Danny was a graduate of Ironton High School and still had a great love for his alma mater.

The seed had been planted. Danny got the bug and he was invited to help coach baseball at the Ironton Middle School. He has also coached some softball as well.

Danny admits he didn’t really need a shove to get back into coach. A little nudge sufficed.

And now he is enjoying his coaching world once again because he gets to help youth people.

“God has blessed my life with wonderful giving people who have passion. You gotta have heart to touch lives,” said Danny.

It looks like Danny Layne isn’t that much like The Beatles after all. He came out of retirement because he couldn’t Let It Be.

——— Respect Life ———

Jim Walker is sports editor emeritus of The Ironton Tribune. Vote YES on Issue 1