The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

July 4, 2013

A Don McCormack column: An email proves right on the Mark

By DON McCORMACK - donmac@suite224.net
Sports Editor

— The six degrees of separation in this life are truly amazing, sometimes.

Case in point, when my email inbox pinged just before 5 a.m. on Independence Day.

While my series about the men who were born within Ashtabula County lines — “From AC to MLB” — has not caused much of a stir locally, it continues to strike a few nerves from several Loyal Readers from out of town.

Here’s the email I received Thursday morning:



Dear Don,



Thank you for the most interesting article detailing the life and career of Sherman Montgomery “Snapper” Kennedy.   

The fact that you wrote this article last week is most serendipitous.  

You see, I married the great granddaughter of Snapper Kennedy in 1984.  I had the good fortune to meet Snapper’s daughter, Clara Ellen Seeley (nee Kennedy), and some of her brothers before she passed away in California about 1990.  

By that time, her memory was fading and she did not speak much of her father other than we knew he had played professional baseball.  

Just a few months ago, I began researching my wife’s family tree.  In so doing I was able to pull Snapper’s stats off of the NBL website and share this with her. I also located his death certificate in Texas which listed his occupation as “Professional Golfer.”

As luck would have it, her brother came to town this evening to visit for the Fourth of July holiday.  

I was excited to share with him what I had found. I quickly Googled his name to find the NBL reference that I found when I came across your article that was published just a few days ago.  

Imagine our surprise. Your research into the details of Snapper’s life and career, along with the wonderful pictures, filled in many missing pieces of the family puzzle for my wife, Patrice, and her brother, Michael Jolstead.   

What may have started out of a small research project for your readers was a treasure trove of family lore for our family, which I am anxious to share with my wife’s uncle and cousins.

Thank you for efforts; the impact reaches farther than you expect sometimes.  



Mark  T.  Blank

Glendale, Ariz.




As you might expect, Loyal Readers, Mark’s message hit home with yours truly.

To this point, seven parts of the series have appeared on these pages. That leaves nine more parts to be published over the coming weeks.

As always, any and all feedback is both welcomed and appreciated.

McCormack is the sports editor of the Star Beacon. Reach him at donmac@suite224.net.