As a parent, after learning of today’s devastating news regarding the death of Tim Evans from complications from neurofibromatosis there are no adequate words.
Father Dwight simply described Tim as his best friend.
Members of the Red Sox extended family knew him as an extraordinarily brave soul who bore his misfortune with grace and an outsized sense of humor.
The report in the Boston Globe read as follows.
Ten months after his younger brother, Justin, died of an incurable genetic disorder that they both had been treated for with dozens of surgeries, Timothy Evans died Saturday in Fort Myers, Fla., to which he had moved a few years ago.
Tim was 47 and had undergone 44 surgeries since symptoms of neurofibromatosis first appeared a few months after he was born. He was the oldest of three children born to legendary Red Sox outfielder Dwight Evans and his wife, Susan, who with their family helped raise awareness about neurofibromatosis.
The family also ran fund-raisers for research, and have been longtime supporters of Burlington-based Neurofibromatosis Northeast. That organization and the national NF Network are working to find treatments and a cure.
“He always had a tremendous sense of humor,” Susan said Monday of Tim, who early on had developed tumors near his left eye. “He loved watching these hysterical movies and telling jokes.”
As a member of the Boston sports community I know that Dwight was and is a champion in every sense of the word.
On and off the field.
The fact he forged a career worthy of Hall of Fame status while bearing the enormous burden of caring for his grievously ill sons warrants our profound respect and empathy. In an oft brutally tough sports market Dewey was the anomaly who got better as he aged and his Indian Summer season of 1988 will always be remembered as one of the great individual and collective campaigns in team history. His bat sparked Morgan’s Magic and his nimble glove and Clemente-like arm silenced crowds and halted many a baserunner in billowing clouds of respectful dust. In 1978 his beaning by Mike Parrot marked the exact moment his team began their epic tailspin from which they later heroically battled back down the stretch.
While patrolling the toughest sun field in the majors at Fenway Dwight elevated himself to the pantheon of Sox right fielders where his peers are Harry Hooper and Mookie Betts. Respectively, one is in Cooperstown, one should be in Cooperstown and one surely is heading to Cooperstown.
Please ponder for a moment that Dwight’s feats were achieved in unimaginable circumstances while worrying about those anticipated late night phone calls, the next doctor’s visit, and operation.
Parents and grandparents, hug your kids especially tight while thinking of the Evans family.
Some folks are given far far more than their fair share of heartache.
Yes, life isn’t fair.