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10/25/2003 (and why I am watching the Marlins again)


Sirspud
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I will always remember the date. It was the last time any of my favorite sports teams won a championship. It was really the first time in my adult life. But it wasn't just the Marlins victory that occurred on this day. This was also the day that my sister entered into marriage with a wonderful man, a man who initially the family had a hard time accepting for reasons difficult to summarize. We later realized that despite our misgivings, my sister truly loved this man, and despite his faults he was an exceptionally caring and loving man who would rest at nothing to make her happy. He became a beloved member of the family, and the one man that I could say without a doubt would be there if you needed something. He has been a tremendous father to the two children they have birthed. After joyously enjoying the first wedding of my adult life, the first time I got to see a close friend or sibling married, numerous extended family retired to our home to watch the world series with us. It was an amazing experience getting to celebrate both events at the same time.

 

On Monday morning my sister's husband passed in a manner that initially appeared to be a suicide but, given some serious medical issues he was having, may have actually been a horrific accident suffered due to a severe seizure (the coroner has yet to make a ruling pending a great deal more evidence being collected, but much of it points towards the latter). This is perhaps the most difficult thing I've ever experienced in my life. His character was beyond question, and in its own way my sister's family was a fairytale romance. I can't imagine any man ever being a better love for my sister, or a better father for my niece and nephew.

 

This tragedy has brought me back to the time when they officially became a family. A time when my life was much different, and a time when I was still relatively in my youth, of which the Marlins were such a big part. I never thought I could love the Marlins again, after the way the organization has practically abused its fan, and after the FLORIDA Marlins, with their teal color and an awkward but colorful stadium, seized to exist, but I really want to love the Marlins again. To do so would bring back a small part of a life that I will never get back. If even 11 years later and well into adulthood my youth still wasn't really dead, it died when my sister's husband left behind two children and a sister who will need my constant love, support, and participation in their lives to make it through. I want that connection with my youth, which was also connected with the Marlins winning (at least at one point), and in their first couple games I've seen a spark that probably won't be sustained, but still shows that this club has potential if the players can player up to that. I know it is wishful thinking, but it would be magical if the Marlins could have a meaningful season. I've been watching games, reading box scores, and all the like every time the Marlins play, which I haven't done in some time.

 

I know this post is less about the Marlins and more about my personal loss, but I wanted to share this personal story. I doubt any of you could imagine that baseball could take on such an emotional significance, but there is something cathartic about rooting for the Marlins to win in hopes that it will make this whole shocking and devastating tragedy make a little more sense.

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Guest Vince0926

This post is why we cling to baseball as an outlet, sirspud. I'm sorry for your loss and I too would like you to gain some comfort from all of this. And may god be with your sister. When my grandfather passed away, it was so rough. When I returned home after work Sunday, I cried in my wife's arms because he went to opening day with me in 2003 and 2004. That's why opening day was so special and you can see my post on the opening day thread this year. Baseball is an outlet that helps you get away from issues. And I agree, the reason why I try to be so positive this year is because I feel like this is what my grandfather wants because he too found the same comfort. See the american flag behind the center field wall on top of the building? That's where his senior home facility was at where he lived his final days. Take in the memories sirspud, and may god be with all of you in this time of need, friend.

 

-vince

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