Tuesday, November 2, 2010

San Francisco Giants~World Series Champions!

TO MY MOTHER
THIS ONE'S FOR YOU


When I was only 8 yrs. old The New York Giants relocated to California and became the San Francisco Giants.  My mother became a fan instantly!  She LOVED the Giants!  She used to put her transistor radio on the table next to her during dinner and every time something exciting happened she would tell us to hush and turn up the volume!  She could tell you all their batting averages and era's.  When Willie McCovey moved up the street from us we were so afraid she would go knock on his door!  I remember when she saw him for the first time at the grocery store she came home soooo excited!   My sister and I were so afraid she would run up to him and hug him or something! LOL  

In 1961 my mother caught a foul ball that was hit by Cincinnati Reds center fielder Vada Pinson.  Some kids offered to buy it from her for a $1.00.  My father laughed at them and said she wouldn't sell it to you for a million dollars!  That ball even though it wasn't hit by a Giants player was my mother's most favorite treasure.  Every Wednesday  night at Burlingame Motors (a local car dealer) a Giants player would come to sign autographs.  My mother used to drag me and my girlfriend Andrea so she could get her ball signed.  She managed to collect everyone but Willie Mays...he never came to sign autographs.  Even so my mother was so proud of her baseball and she proudly displayed it on the bookshelf in our family room always!  When my oldest son Brian got a little older my mother told him someday she would pass her very special treasure onto him.  Unfortunately she passed away before she was able to give him the baseball.  Knowing this was her wish I had the honor of passing it on to my son.  But before I did I had it placed in a special case with my mother's name and the year she caught the ball.  It now sits on the shelf of my son's home office and has become his treasure!  My hope is for my mother's baseball to be passed on again with the story that goes with it.  She would be so proud!  
My Mother's treasured baseball!

A couple of years ago I got an email from my best friend Diane letting me know a wall was being built at the Willie Mays entrance of AT&T Park to raise money for the Say Hey Kids.  You could purchase a baseball, a bat or a gold glove and it would be displayed on the new Willie Mays wall.  I knew this was my chance to have my mother's name at the park where her beloved team played.  I quickly sent in my application for a baseball with my mother's name on it and a replica ball for myself to display on my desk.  All the money is donated to the underprivileged  kids which made it even more special.  It took well over a year to build the wall then one day I received an email letting me know it was finished.  My husband and I were invited to attend the dedication and stay for the game that evening.  It was so exciting to see Willie Mays and even more exciting and very emotional to see my mother's name on the baseball sitting so proudly in the beautifully built wall.  
The unveiling!
Willie Mays dedication!
The Willie Mays Say Hey Kids Wall!
My Mother's baseball!
My granddaughters at a Giants game pointing to their Great Gramma's ball!

Even when my mother's dementia would sometimes keep her from remembering she never forgot the Giants were a HUGE part of her life.  One day while living in her assisted living facility she told everyone she played for the San Francisco Giants!  PRICELESS! 

Thanks for visiting me today!



4 comments:

  1. Sissy

    This is a wonderful story and tribute to our mother. She would be so proud. While watching each game of the series, I felt our mother was looking down and yelling and talking to each player, and the more exciting the game got the more she screamed and yelled.

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  2. You are amazing! I love the story and the dedication! Thanks for sharing! =) ~Susan

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  3. Oh, Denise, what a great story! I loved it! So heartwarming. What a beautiful tribute to your mom! I know you miss her so much. Made me a little teary because, as you know, I lost my sister in March to ovarian cancer and this and the Giants' win made me think about her. She was also a true Giants fan and would have, like your mom, been so happy to see them win it all. Big hugs to you.... Jilly :)

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  4. Oh Denise I did come prepared with the Kleenex and its a good thing!
    What a truly wonderful story and I can read the love of your Mom between each word!
    She had the best seat in the stadium to watch her beloved Giants win the World Series!! Yippeee!!
    Thank you for sharing such an inspiring story!
    Teary Huggies,
    Lynn

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