By Sally Tippett Rains
The McClain sisters of St. Louis recently took in Fenway Park to help their brother celebrate a milestone birthday—and their longtime family Cardinals spirit came through even though it was a Mets- Red Sox game.
Dr. Cheryl Shea and Carol Fisher flew to the East Coast for their brother, Dr. Steve McClain’s birthday.
Steve McClain, M.D., lives in New York, but the celebration was in Boston—with a baseball theme.
“Steve lives on Long Island, and has been a Mets fan for 30 years,” said Carol (McClain) Fisher. “The Mets were playing the Red Sox at Fenway, so we were in the middle of a group of Mets fans. Our brother was originally a Cardinals fan but he’s been in New York a long time.”
Growing up, the McClain family were Cardinals fans and as with many St. Louisans, the Cardinals games were the soundtrack of their youth.
“When we were kids, my grandpa got tuberculosis and needed help running his icehouse business in Fenton, so our dad stepped in,” said Cheryl. “Every spring and summer weekend we would be at the icehouse with something on the barbecue grill and of course, the Cardinals on the radio.”
The time spent with family listening to the ballgames always on the radio helped them all develop into lifelong Cardinals fans, however Steve has a reason to root for the Mets nowadays.
“His father-in-law was a part-owner of the Mets, but he was a Cardinals fan at heart,” said Shea. “I feel lucky to have heard Jack Buck and Harry Caray announcing the games,” she said. “Our brother said Dad took him to Sportsman’s Park for Stan Musial’s last game.”
He never forgot that even when he moved to New York, as it helped cement his love for baseball and he continued going to baseball games. Steve who is a medical doctor, owns McClain Laboratories, based in Smithtown, New York. It is a pathology lab and Carol works with him. They are all in health-related fields as Cheryl Shea, DC owns a private wellness practice, “The Gut Doc” in Kirkwood.
“Steve loves baseball and had to become a Met’s fan since living in New York,” said Shea. “Since the Mets and Red Sox don’t play that often, Steve wanted to go to Boston for his birthday.”
They made it a family affair. A delegation of friends, co-workers and family both from St. Louis and New York thought it would be fun to descend on Fenway Park
“We had tickets for Friday and Saturday games,” said Fisher. “Friday went four innings– then torrential rains came.”
Fisher and Shea stood out among the Mets and Red Sox Fans.
“Steve wanted us to wear Met’s shirts,” said Shea, “But Carol said NO WAY and she brought the jerseys. We survived a torrential rainstorm Friday night, and returned for the Saturday game.”
“The whole thing was crazy fun and made for some great memories,” said Fisher. “It was insanity trying to get out of the stadium without getting drenched.
This special birthday journey was the first time the siblings had all gotten together on a trip and a lot of fun was had by all.
The best part was that a special event was celebrated through the love of baseball. Deep down in Steve’s heart he may have some love for the Cardinals stemming from the family’s childhood when they all listened to the games together.
Moving to another town often causes fans to add another team to their hearts. Years later the McClains are still being brought together by baseball.