Jake's Place, a playground for everybody

CAMDEN COUNTY, N.J. - October 15, 2011

Matt Sax of Marlton, New Jersey said, "Tori loves the playground and she has an older brother, but it's hard for her to keep up on a traditional playground. and having this space, where she can use her walker and she can go up ramps, and go down the slides and do all the things that the other kids do, is just a great experience."

Build Jake's Place, the non-profit that made a playground a reality, was formed back in 2007, after the death of two-and-a-half-year-old Jake Miles Cummings Nasto.

"My wife came up with the idea, since some of our fondest memories of Jake was at a playground, to build a playground to help other handicapped kids to be able to play," said Joseph Nasto of Build Jake's Place.

Literally thousands of volunteers from corporations to schoolchildren raised money, donated goods and spent man-hours planning, building and landscaping the site, which was donated by the Camden County Parks Department.

Today, all their work paid off for children like Dominick .

"He gets to play with other kids. Right now, there's no other playground besides this one where he can wheel up and join playing with the other kids," said David Stratton of Mount Laurel, New Jersey.

Heidi Brunswich of Mount Laurel added, "...for us to take the wheelchair out on a surface like this and for him to be able to swing, means so much to him, just to get him outdoors."

Jake's Dad says Jake would've loved playing here, too.

Today's playground opening is just the beginning for Build Jake's Place. Next, they want to tear down an old playground nearby to build a "miracle field" where children in wheelchairs can play softball with able-bodied children.

Copyright © 2020 WPVI-TV. All Rights Reserved.