Top Stories 2022: Dylan Newman is remembered as a ‘hero’

Dylan Newman, who graduated with Southold High School’s Class of 2022, was remembered as a hero by his community after he died Sept. 20. He was 18.

Dylan was diagnosed with Ewing sarcoma in 2018 after experiencing pain in his hip while playing baseball. In July of that year, having just completed eighth grade, he underwent surgery to remove a tumor from his pelvis and fibula. 

Dylan then began 53 weeks of chemotherapy, after which doctors determined he was in remission. In October 2020, however, his cancer returned and he was outfitted with a backpack that continually administered his medication through a port. 

Throughout all he endured, Dylan remained a passionate baseball player. The Suffolk Times honored him as its 2021 Sports Person of the Year when he returned to the Southold baseball team, two years after he began treatments in 2018. 

He played with the Southold varsity team this past spring, even while undergoing a third round of treatment. He was also a member of the school’s basketball team and worked his way up from a managing position this past year to playing on the court as he was regaining his strength.

From the moment Dylan was diagnosed , the community rallied behind the Newman family, organizing many events to raise funds and help support them through the past four years. 

One of the last events was a vigil at Jean Cochran Park in Peconic, held on Sept. 25, the weekend of his death. Hundreds of friends, family members, students and community members gathered that day to celebrate Dylan’s life.

Many in the crowd wore green tops that said “Team Dylan.” Others carried small LED candles that lit up in green.

On the baseball field, Dylan’s sister Kelsey led the community in a walk around the bases in his honor. His father, Todd, spoke about what the community support meant to him and his family.

“I don’t know how to put in words, but we shared our son with all of you, all of you, because he loved everybody,” he said.

Dylan Newman was laid to rest Sept. 27 at First Presbyterian Church of Southold. To this day, tributes — green porch lights, small green flags by the roadsides — remain visible across Southold hamlet. Plans are also underway to set up a nonprofit in his memory.