Little Lass field to be dedicated to Emma Cole on Saturday

In October, a temporary memorial was created at Smyrna Clayton Little Lass softball complex for 3-year-old Emma Cole, whose remains were found there last year. On Saturday, the organization will dedicate a field in her name. (Delaware State News/Craig Anderson)

SMYRNA — On Saturday afternoon, the Smyrna Clayton Little Lass Softball organization plans to name a field in memory of the late Emma Grace Cole, whose remains were found at its complex last year.

A dedication ceremony for Emma Grace Memorial Field is scheduled for 3 p.m. at the complex at 887 Duck Creek Parkway, according to a Facebook post. The child was 3 years old when she died, according to Smyrna police. She was discovered deceased at the complex Sept. 13, 2019, authorities said.

On Oct. 12 of this year, following public identification of the child by police, the softball organization posted a statement on Facebook that read: “The Little Lass Board of Directors would like to express our sincere sadness and heartbreak for the loss of baby Emma Cole. Our league is in the process of working on a more permanent memorial, but in the meantime, if anyone wants to place flowers at the complex, we ask that you place them near the memorial wreath that we have placed near our batting cages. Rest In Peace Emma.”

Flowers, stuffed animals and two candles encased in glass with the image of St. Jude were placed around the wreath at that time. In the center of it all was a message that read “In Memory of Emma Cole.”

Two arrests were made in October following investigation into the case. The child’s mother, Kristie L. Haas, and her stepfather, Brandon L. Haas, have been charged with endangering the welfare of a child and tampering with physical evidence, according to court records.

Fueled by social media, the case quickly drew widespread attention after the arrests were made.

A private “Justice For Emma Grace” Facebook page, which started shortly after the arrests were announced, had approximately 1,700 members as of Thursday afternoon. After the page’s launch, members identified themselves as being from at least 20 states, along with Australia, Canada, Great Britain, Scotland, Germany and Finland, as well as many area towns.