Larry Bird & M.L. Carr Open WARM2Kids Learning Center in Memory of Teammate Dennis Johnson

ML Carr

Donna Johnson and M.L. cut the ribbon at the opening of the new Dennis Johnson Learning Center at the Central Branch of the Boston YMCA.
Brian Babineau/NBAE/Getty

BOSTON, MA (October 26, 2007) - Boston Celtics great, the late Dennis Johnson, was a role model not only in the community, but also to his many teammates. The positive impact Johnson had during and after his playing days is something that his colleagues on and off the court remember vividly. As a tribute to that memory, NBA legend, Larry Bird and his wife, Dina have opened a WARM2Kids Learning Center in Johnson's name with the help of fellow teammate, and WARM2Kids president/CEO, M.L. Carr.

Carr along with family, friends and former teammates of Dennis Johnson were on hand at the Central Branch YMCA of Greater Boston to launch the Dennis "DJ" Johnson Learning Center. "This was an incredible opportunity to give back to the Boston community, which gave so much to all of us during our time with the Celtics," said Bird of sponsoring the center. "DJ always had a deep love and respect for the team and the city, so it was a great way to remember him." All Central Y members will have access to the newly equipped technology center; outfitted with top of the line computers and accessories, while teens and young adults will also receive a free membership to the WARM2Kids website.

Developed in conjunction with renowned family therapist Dr. Lonnie Carton, WARM2Kids (the acronym stands for We're All Role Models 2 Kids) offers online social and emotional development resources, celebrity role model interviews, member interactivity and offline youth programs. The goal of the organization is to eliminate "silent suffering" by providing teens and young adults with safe, reliable information about the issues that concern them. The WARM2Kids Learning Center Program connects socially responsible companies and individuals with community and youth organizations to impact young people's social and emotional development. This is a goal that his wife Donna believes would have been close to Johnson's heart. "If Dennis were alive he would really appreciate the thought and love the idea of the Learning Center," said Donna Johnson. "He always had a big heart in helping people and especially children. Thank you for honoring his name and the blessing it gives to help others."

The prestigious Central Branch YMCA is one of several youth organizations in the Boston area to receive a WARM2Kids Learning Center. Carr hopes to expand the WARM2Kids program so that millions of young people, parents and educators use the site to stay connected with each other. "We would like to let people know that no matter what they've been through, somebody has been through it," Carr has stated. "If they have anxiety, depression or acne - somebody has been through it, so why not connect people who have been through it to people who are experiencing it now?"

For more information about WARM2Kids please contact Andrea Carr at 617-254-9276 or andrea.carr@warm2kids.com.

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