The Red Sox are a team beloved for many reasons, whether it be proximity, eight championships, or a love for Boston sports in general. My story involves something much more personal.
In 2004, my uncle Greg was dying of cancer. On a beautiful April afternoon, I remember sitting in the waiting room of the hospital with my father. As we sat there, my dad, being a huge baseball fan, turned on the tv to find a game to watch. I was in the 4th grade at the time and my interest in Major League Baseball was starting to peak. However, I didn’t have a team to call my own. The first game we came across on tv that day just happened to involve the Red Sox. I was clueless about this team, who cleverly spelled “socks” with a signature x. I became interested rather quickly, so I began asking my father all sorts of questions about this team. He told me that they had not won a championship in 86 years and that they were cursed. As we continued watching, I asked my dad a more serious question: “Dad, is uncle Greg going to get better?” My father teared up a bit as he pondered what to tell me, his youngest son, who didn’t need to hear that the cancer was eventually going to claim my uncle’s life. He glanced at the tv and back to me. The words he said still resonate with me to this day: “Sam, when the Red Sox win the World Series, uncle Greg will be better. And he’ll be happy again.”
From that moment on, I became a die-hard Red Sox fan. I got my very first Red Sox shirt, a David Ortiz shirt. I began to fill my room with Red Sox memorabilia. I watched every single game that was available to me. I fell in love with the team that gave me hope and faith when I needed it the most.
A few weeks after that day in the hospital, cancer took my uncle Greg from me. But the story isn’t over. The Red Sox would go on to win in October, snapping the curse. And when they won, I knew. I knew my uncle was in a better place, no more suffering, no more pain. And I knew that he was happy. After the Sox won, I bought a small pennant flag that read: “2004 World Series Champions” and I placed the flag next to my uncle’s grave, where it still remains to this day.
The Red Sox gave me hope during the time I needed it the most. They taught me to always have faith, to hold on even in your most uncertain times in life. For that, I am forever grateful to them. I love them with all my heart and I associate them with my uncle. From now until the day I die, I will always be a Red Sox fan.