Vin Scully And My Stepfather: 2 Heroes In My Life
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By Aaron Roberts (Dodgers Correspondent): Follow @Bertsball
I know a man who is 61 years old. Since he was a child, he has cherished the voice of another man. This other man’s voice has gotten him through the hardest times in his life. This man’s voice has gotten him through the suicide of his father when he was 9 years old. This man’s voice has gotten him through the death of his mother on the day he turned 10 years old. This man’s voice has gotten him through the death of his sister when he was 15 years old and then later, the death of his brother when he was 45 years old. This man’s voice has been with him for over 50 years and will always be with him. That man I know is my Stepfather and the Voice that has comforted him for half a century belongs to Vin Scully.
To say that my Stepfather is a fan of the Dodgers and particularly Vin Scully is an understatement. My Stepfather has been frustrated, angry, happy, fed-up, melancholy and down right embarrassed with the Dodgers. But through all the games, all the joy and all the heartbreak, my Stepfather has never lost faith in the Dodgers. In the 60 years of him wearing Dodger blue, there has been one constant; Vin Scully’s voice. It is the voice of a legend. The kind of voice that soothes you when you’re in pain and encourages you when you think you can’t go on. His is the voice of Baseball itself.
My Stepfather has had a particular fondness for Vin Scully. It’s the kind of admiration you have in front of a store window. You love what’s inside because to you, it’s perfect. It’s untainted. You see it but you never touch it. It looks just right in the way it’s presented. My stepfather has never met or spoken to Vin Scully so to him, his experience with Vin Scully is always magnificent. It can’t be any other way. Most of us view our childhood past through rose-colored lenses and at 61 years old, that’s how my stepfather hears Vin’s voice. As he would when he was a child and Vin Scully was serenading him to sleep through the radio. His voice is the melody of a memory.
Aside from a few pictures and maybe a program or two, my Stepfather has very little Vin Scully memorabilia. Not being one to collect things, he hasn’t gone out of his way to create any sort of shrine for Vin. He does have one thing however, that is above the rest. It is a Vin Scully autographed baseball. You might not immediately realize why this is so important but if you think about the adulation of an individual, it makes more sense. Vin Scully signed that ball. No matter how many of those are in existence, Vin signed that one. He held it, put a pen to it and made a motion with his hand. It’s the closest my stepfather has ever come to Vin Scully. It’s as if Vin signed that ball, made that effort, just for him.
Recently in my hometown, there was a terrible accident. A drunk-driver with a criminal past was fleeing from the police and hit a car with a woman and her 2-year old daughter inside. The woman was a close family friend. She was severely injured but she survived. Her daughter didn’t. Now where I’m from, there is a very close albeit large circle of friends. The woman was a part of that circle. This shook the circle to its core. Her and her husband needed funding for funeral costs, medical related bills and the time lost at work due to her injuries. A fundraiser was organized that allowed people to donate things to be sold at auction. My Stepfather donated a very personal and prized possession. My Stepfather donated his Vin Scully autographed baseball.
A quick Internet search reveals that a Vin Scully autographed baseball can be obtained for around 2-3 hundred Dollars. That may not seem like a lot or anything to make a big deal over however the cost is not the point. That ball that he gave up was HIS. It belonged to him in a way that no other ball can, and he gave it away. Doing so required letting go of a part of himself. That ball was the embodiment of his oldest childhood friend. It was the physical manifestation of a childhood memory and he gave it away for a family in need. That’s the type of man my Stepfather is. He is a selfless and loving individual who takes care of the people around him despite the cost to himself.
This story isn’t meant to illicit any sort of sympathy from the reader nor is it meant to be preachy. This story is merely a recognition of a good-hearted man. This story is a thank you to my Stepfather for being a man I look up to. It is a thank you for always putting others before himself and bettering the lives of those around him.
If Vin Scully is the voice of my childhood, then my Stepfather is the Heart.
*** The views and opinions expressed in this report are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of mlbreports.com and their partners***
A big thank-you goes out to our ‘Dodgers Correspondent’ Aaron Roberts for preparing today’s featured article. “Berts” as his friends call him, has been a True Blue believer since before he can remember. It hasn’t always been easy, but he’s stuck with the Dodgers through thick and thin and things are finally starting to look up! Cut him open and you’ll see that he bleeds blue. Growing up in the outskirts of Los Angeles, he now resides in Orange County. He attends as many Dodger Home games as he can and scoffs every time his girlfriend drags him to an Angel game (but secretly he enjoys it because any Baseball is better than no Baseball!) A passionate student of the game, he cherishes the legacies and traditions that are intrinsic to Baseball. his life goal is to visit all 30 ballparks and purchase a hat from each one. So far he’s checked 9 off his list with plans to conquer 6 more this upcoming season. Every Spring, he travels to the Arizona desert to catch a glimpse of the upcoming season and the stars that light up the diamond covered in dirt. You can find his rants and musings here and come be his twitter friend. Follow @bertsball
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