I was getting ready to leave the house when I got a call from my buddy Steve in Boston, he tells me that Carl Beane, public address announcer for the Red Sox had been killed in a single car accident today in Sturbridge Ma. Carl had been the Red Sox announcer since 2003, winning the job over numerous others vying for the position. He had a great voice, definitely a voice made for radio and of course that’s where he got his start.
I had the privilege of interviewing Carl a few years ago, the way I came to meet him was actually out of an act of kindness on his part involving my daughter. Lindsey was returning to Atlanta from Boston and this was after 9/11 so there is no one allowed past security except those who are ticketed so Lindsey, who was about 15-16 at the time waited for her non-stop flight at the gate by herself and then it got delayed, so the 2 hour wait turns into over 3 hours. Well, Carl had heard Lindsey talking to me on the phone, answering questions like, “yeah, I’m okay, I’m at the gate, I promise I won’t wander around etc. When we got off the phone Carl and his traveling companion struck up a conversation with her and it wasn’t very long before she sees his World Series ring with the big “B” surrounded by diamonds and rubies. She asked him if he worked for the Red Sox and he said yes, he told her who he was and they continued to talk and basically he and his friend looked after her until they got on the plane.
Before they separated in Atlanta (Carl was continuing on to Florida) he gave her his business card from the Sox and told her to give it to her dad and he’d know who it was that kept her company. When I met her at the curb I was putting her bag in the trunk and I asked her about the wait and she starts telling me the story and when we got in the car she handed me the card and I saw who it was and I told her that it was very nice of him to keep you company. A few days later I called him and just wanted to thank him for taking the time to kind of look after her and he told me it was his pleasure, he was glad to do it, she looked bored, a little cranky about the wait but she was a really great kid and he enjoyed talking to her just like he did all the kids at the ball park. He then extended an offer for us to hook up with him the next time we were in town and Lindsey and I had flown up for the holidays to Boston, she was seeing friends in NH and I was staying with Steve outside of Boston, we picked her up and went to Boston and met Carl for lunch around the corner from Fenway, here’s the picture of all of us from that visit.
I had spoken to him that day about the interview and we tossed some stuff around but it wasn’t until I got back from the trip that I put the entire interview questions down, gathered some ideas from folks at TSN and the submitted them to Carl via email. About 3 days later I got them back, then he called and we went over the answers, I asked a few follow up questions and that was it. The interview went over well, got a lot of feedback from it, I really enjoyed it. I did see him one more time after that winter, Steve and I had gone to the Red Sox-Cardinals game and I called Carl the night before and he said let’s hookup before the game and we can go upstairs to the booth and chat for a few so when we got to Fenway I gave him a quick call and he came down and met us and we went upstairs to where the announcers all are, here’s Steve D with Carl.
Like frag said, Carl was as much a part of Fenway as anyone who played for the Sox, he gave an awful lot of himself too. He was very generous with his time, he had emceed weddings, one he did in a full Red Sox uniform, he did the auctions for the Jimmy Fund, the long time Red Sox charity that benefits kids at Boston Children’s Hospital and Spalding rehab center, was involved with diabetes foundation and many other charities. He was a terrific guy, funny as hell, had lots of great stories and never would say no to anyone who wanted to talk baseball or just pose for a simple picture. RIP Carl Beane, your voice will be missed at Fenway Park.
If you want to watch a terrific interview with Carl who talks about how he got his job with the Sox, or other great stuff from his travels since the 70's covering baseball for WBZ-Boston and the Worcester Telegram this is one you will find enjoyable.