I posted this story for the first time back in July 2008 and have brought it back several times since. If you haven’t seen it before I hope you enjoy it.
From time to time we here at the Mets Police have given the Mets grief on some of the things they do – it’s what we are here for after all. Today however I must tip my cap and publicly thank the Mets, Mr. Met, and especially Pedro Martinez for something that was very personal.
Saturday was my mom’s 71st birthday. A few thing about my mom. She is a small Irish woman who came here over 50 years ago but still has her accent. Back in the 60′s she worked for a company that had a box at Shea and she attended a number of games (she likes to tell people how she sat next to Joan Payson). But she stopped going (and stopped working) after I was born. So she has not been to Shea since 1966.
Now to give you an idea how much of a fan she is, during the 10th inning of Game 6, she had her rosary out and was kneeling in front of the TV set saying Hail Mary’s as fast as she could. My sister, through some people she knows, was able to get a field box at Shea for Saturday’s game. She also was able to contact someone she knows who works for the Mets and let him know that our mom would be there on her birthday.
So, we go to the game – my parents, my sister, and I. Our mom is tickled pink to be at Shea. At the gate they are handing out teddy bears as a promotion to all kids. Of course my mom wants one, and as soon as they hear that it’s her 71st, no problem, they give her one. That was very nice.
Skip ahead to the fourth inning. One of the staff comes over and lets my mom know that during the 4th, Mr. Met is coming over to give her a present. Middle of the 4th and here comes Mr. Met to present her with the 1-800-FLOWERS birthday cake bouquet. Mr. Met sat down behind her and she is giddy – starts talking to him and laughing. Then at the end of the inning they put her and my dad on Diamond Vision with Mr. Met. Priceless! So we thought that was the highlight of the day.
After the game, we took some pictures, then went up to check out the Diamond Club. While up there she (as only an older Irish woman does) starts chatting with the security guys – asking about Pedro, her favorite Met, and where he might be. Security actually tells us that because of the Billy Joel concert set up, the players are coming out from Gate D today. So Mom now wants to go down to see if she can spot Pedro. All 0f a sudden this 71 yr old woman is acting like a 16 yr old.
We get to Gate D and looking around, set ourselves up at the end of the crowd that has gathered. Wouldn’t you know one of the security guys mom had talked to is now right near us. He points out Pedro’s driver to us and tells mom and I to go over to him and tell him it’s her birthday. We go over, I talk to the guy (Angel) and ask if he thought Pedro would take a picture with my mom for her birthday. Next thing I know he gets a cop to escort us over to Pedro’s car.
When Pedro comes out, Angel tells him about my mom – he immediately comes over and give her a huge hug and kiss. Security cordon off an area around Pedro, his cars, and us. Then they start talking – seriously their conversation went on for a good 5 minutes – he was the nicest guy to her. When she told him he was her favorite player, he said “Really? Me? Not David Wright?” She said something else to him that had him laughing. Really, a very very nice guy. I thanked him and he said it was a pleasure to meet us then hugged my mom again.
Walking back to the car people kept coming up to her wishing her a Happy Birthday and congratulating her on meeting Pedro. So a hundred thousand thank yous to the Mets, Mr. Met, and especially Pedro Martinez for making my mom’s birthday an amazingly memorable occasion.
These 2 pictures say it all:
Postscript – One year later (to the day) my Mom passed away on her 72nd birthday. She loved Shea, and while she never got to see Citi Field, her memory and love of the Mets will live on.