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Ready for opening day

Sports enthusiast eager to cheer on Red Sox

Created date

April 16th, 2015
Donna Daley (center) cuts the ribbon to open the FENtennial: Fenway Park’s First 100 Years exhibit at the National Baseball Hall of Fame in April 2012. Donna is flanked by Jeff Idelson (second from right), president of the National Baseball Hall of Fame a
Donna Daley (center) cuts the ribbon to open the F

Donna Daley might just be New England’s biggest sports fan.

“The Red Sox are my number one team,” says Donna. “But the Patriots and Bruins aren’t too far behind.”

Donna’s love affair with sports began in her hometown of State College, Pa., home of the Penn State Nittany Lions.

“There was a little bleacher reserved in the football stadium for the town kids,” says Donna. “For 25 cents, I used to watch Penn State play Michigan State.”

A true New England fan

Donna’s affinity for sports grew when she moved to Medford, Mass., to attend Tufts University. 

“While I was at Tufts, a boyfriend took me to my first Red Sox game at Fenway Park,” says Donna. “I saw Ted Williams play, although he wasn’t a big deal to me at the time. I was much more impressed to see Harry Agannis, the Golden Greek from Lynn, Mass., playing for the Red Sox.”

After graduating with a degree in physical therapy, Donna married and settled in Lynnfield to raise her three sons.

“We lived across the street from Bobby Orr, who was 22 at the time,” says Donna. “He used to come out and play street hockey with my boys.”

Donna maintains that hockey great Orr, who scored an overtime goal in 1970 to clinch the Stanley Cup for the Boston Bruins, is her all-time favorite player. 

“We all love Tom Brady, of course, but Bobby Orr is New England’s most-beloved athlete,” she says.

Dealing in sports memorabilia

In the late 1970s, when her sons were in high school, Donna took on a new venture as an antiques dealer.

“A friend and I opened an antiques shop in Wakefield,” says Donna. “By chance, I found a Jackie Robinson rookie card in my mother-in-law’s attic. Baseball trading cards were just taking off around that time, and I found myself acquiring and selling sports memorabilia.”

Donna eventually moved her wares up to the tourist-laden coast of Maine, renting space in Hutchins Antiques in Ogunquit.

“I still sell baseball cards, photographs, pennants, and books in Ogunquit, although I’m starting to wind down,” says Donna, who moved to



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