One day before the five-month anniversary of the death of Cuban-born Miami Marlins pitcher José Fernández, his daughter was born.
Maria Arias, Fernández’s girlfriend, gave birth to their daughter Penelope in Miami, Florida on Friday. Although Fernández never got to lay eyes on his little girl, she carries the name that he picked out for her last August when he and Arias found out they were expecting a girl. Sadly, just one month after choosing his daughter’s name Fernández died in a boating accident.
Fernández died along with two companions on September 25 when his boat was overturned after crashing into a rocky jetty near Government Cut, Florida. He was 24 years old at the time of his death.
At his funeral on September 29, his agent Scott Boras, emotionally described how excited Fernández had been to become a father. “He wanted to know, ‘Am I going to be a good father?'” Boras said. “And I told him, ‘You’re going to be a great father because you’re going to treat your child in the same way that your mother treated you, and you’ll know exactly what to do.’ The next day, he ordered a baseball glove, all those colors he loved, and he put ‘Penelope’ for his unborn daughter [on it].”
Hopefully, Penelope will grow up hearing that story over and over and know that her father loved her even before she was born.