Fenway at 100

Remembering Carl Beane

By Annie Shreffler

May 11, 2012

Carl Beane
Photo from the Carl Beane website

BOSTON — Carl Beane, the public announcer for the Boston Red Sox since 2003, died this past Wednesday, experiencing a heart attack that caused him to swerve his car and collide with a tree, then a wall, while driving on Holland Road in Sturbridge, Mass.

When WGBH began our series called "Fenway Fridays", to recognize the significance of baseball history in Boston and the importance of our 100-year old park, the last thing we could imagine was the death of our friend. We all know Carl as that voice of the man behind the microphone of every Red Sox home game since 2003. Carl's voice also rang out in other venues, from the movie "Fever Pitch," to an exhibit at the baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown.


Carl Beane with WGBH News reporter Ibby Caputo, showing off his World Series rings during an interview in 2010.
When we heard of Carl's accident, everyone at WGBH Radio took a collective pause and shared stories about his enthusiasm, his baseball superstitions and how he stayed young by surrounding himself with the love of sports along the road to Fenway Park.

Listen to this WGBH broadcast of audio moments with Carl. Hear him recall what it was like to begin his first opening game with an unpopular parking announcement, hear about his childhood hope for a World Series ring and finally, listen to Fenway's moment of silence held for Carl this week.

Beane, 59, was a frequent contributor to WGBH Radio's sports coverage, and a friend to WGBH audio engineer Mike Wilkins, who talked with Morning Edition host Bob Seay about Beane's love for sports:

In a 2011 conversation with Emily Rooney, Beane said he began covering the Red Sox as a sports reporter in 1977 and got the unexpected opportunity to call Fenway games after a one-time audition during spring training.

"I'm sitting in the booth about a half an hour before the game, down in Florida, the place is full and I'm thinking to myself, 'What have I just talked myself into?', because my PA experience is zero," Beane said.

"It's kind of spooky talking to you," Rooney said during their interview. "That voice is just so familiar, and here you are talking like a regular person. We don't think of you as a regular person. You are that voice from the booth, like the voice of God."

Carl's family asks that contributions in his memory be donated to the Holland Congregational Church Building Fund in Holland, Mass., or to the  American Diabetes Association.


About Fenway at 100

WGBH News brings you local stories and historic moments from Fenway Park, home of the Boston Red Sox, as it marks a century in baseball history. (Fenway photo courtesy of the Boston Red Sox.)

About the Author
Annie Shreffler Annie Shreffler
Annie Shreffler is a digital features producer, writer and photographer for WGBH.org. She obtained an M.A. in Journalism from the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism and kicked off her second career as a digital projects producer for The Brian Lehrer Show on WNYC New York Public Radio.

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WGBH Radio will air Fenway stories on Fridays throughout the baseball season. Listen for accounts of history, innovation, behind-the-scenes and how the arts were influenced by America's oldest ballpark.

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