Southcoast Health donates $25,000 to build the Sgt. Sean M. Gannon Memorial Playground

The donation includes proceeds from the sale of limited edition T-shirts plus an additional donation by Southcoast Health.

Southcoast Health presented a check for $25,000 to the Sgt. Sean M. Gannon Playground Committee, on Saturday, September 8, during the committee’s “An Evening Under the Stars” fundraising event, held at the Madeira Feast grounds in New Bedford.

“The news of Sgt. Gannon’s tragic death struck the employees of Southcoast Health to the core,” said Keith A. Hovan, President & CEO of Southcoast Health. “When I learned of this effort to construct a world-class playground at the Campbell Elementary School, in New Bedford, and dedicate it to Sgt. Gannon, I immediately knew it was an endeavor Southcoast should support.”

Working collaboratively with the Playground Committee, Southcoast Health designed and printed special-edition T-shirts that would raise awareness – and financial support – for the initiative, while including a simple message that embodies Sean’s personality: Love, Laugh, Play. Net proceeds from sales of the T-shirts were donated to the effort along with an additional donation from Southcoast Health.

“On behalf of the Playground Committee, I want to thank Southcoast Health for the extremely generous donation that was presented to us this past Saturday,” said Carla Mourao, Chairperson of the Sgt. Sean M. Gannon Playground Committee. “The support we have received from Southcoast Health employees, as well as everyone else who purchased a T-shirt, is greatly appreciated and will make a lasting difference to our Campbell School students and the community. This donation provided our project with a huge jump start in reaching our goal, and we can’t wait to hear the sound of kids playing on our new playground.”

A member of the K-9 unit of the Yarmouth Police Department, Sgt. Sean M. Gannon, whose parents both work for Southcoast, was shot and killed in the line of duty on April 12. His dog, Nero, was also shot but survived his injuries.

The playground will be built at Campbell Elementary School, 145 Essex St., New Bedford. Sgt. Gannon grew up in the city and often played on the Campbell Schools grounds.

The Sgt. Gannon Memorial Playground Committee is made up of parents, teachers and community members.

T-shirts in limited sizes continue to be available for purchase at the Southcoast More Store ( and sell for $25; shipping is included. They come in male, female and youth styles and sizes.