Thursday, May 29, 2008
Part of the Team
If you have a moment, please read this.
Obviously, we receive a great many letters from our fans and establish many, many lasting relationships. This letter is from Diane Fagan, a mom, a Sox fan, and through a terrible tragedy, someone who started her own foundation to help others cope with loss.
Sox fans one and all, the Fagans got to know former Sox bullpen catcher Man Soo Lee through their many games in the outfield seats (who out there didn’t know and love Man Soo). Tommy Fagan, Diane’s son, loved his White Sox.
One Mother’s Day, Tommy, then a second grader, was given the game ball for his team’s victory in a youth league game. At a family gathering later that day, he showed the ball off proudly. In order not to lose or misplace his prized ball, Tommy returned to the family mini van to stowe it away for the trip home.
Some how, some way, Tommy was trapped inside the van, losing his life in a terrible, terrible tragedy.
Diane recently wrote us this letter:
Dear Christine [ed. note: White Sox senior director of community relations],
I know you are incredibly busy, but I wanted to drop you a note to say thank you. Let me explain.
Last weekend Tom visited the “Champions Plaza” to see Tommy’s brick. He searched that baseline and could not find it! After some time, a friend of his who was standing at home plate looked down and there it was! We never expected it to be in such an important place. If that wasn’t enough he noticed the brick that apparently Jim Thome’s Mom purchased [note: a brick was purchased on behalf of Jim Thome's mom, who died of cancer some years ago] for Jim was next to Tommy’s. For that moment I just thought that Tommy was finally part of the team.
I know when you do your job you don’t always think of the full impact it has on people, but I’ve told you this before, the White Sox just mean so much to us, and honestly bring us comfort in a way. We would never have thought that we would have this connection to the White Sox the way we do, it’s like those relatives that you don’t get together with or something like that.
The brick is something that our daughter Kristen wanted for Tommy since he died and she is thrilled, as Tommy is, that it’s finally here. Please thank everyone involved and let them know that what they do is so important.
Thank you again,
In the aftermath of the tragedy, the Fagan family started the Healing Homes Foundation to help other families cope with such a devastating loss. This year the Foundation will celebrate Tommy’s 2nd Home Party. To find out more, click here.
Someone said the placement of Tommy’s brick was purely accidental. It just happened to work out that way. I’m not so sure …