The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio


August 22, 2013

A Don McCormack column: Two shining stars watching over us

Two years ago yesterday, I found my colleague, a mentor and a dear friend, Karl Pearson, when I broke his door down and could not revive him.

Karl was 58.

As I sit here, immersed in my annual biggest project of the year, wondering where I’m going to find the strength, the hours and the ability to finish it, I think of Karl, remembering the 25 or so times we went through this very thing, though we did so then as a team.

The final thing we did together was the very same project, finishing it together.

I’ll never forget, as he walked out the door and headed for home, I told him, “Thanks, Karl. I appreciate everything you do, I love you, buddy.”

He paused at the door, looked back at me, and said, “I love you, too, Don. This football section is the best thing we’ve ever done during my time here at the Star Beacon.”

With that, he shut the door and headed to his car. For some reason, I stared at the door for a few seconds, pondering what the man who hired me on Nov. 9, 1986, the man who covered me during my high schools as a basketball player at Jefferson, said.

Just now, I find myself staring at that very same door, thinking about not only the 27 years ago we spent together here on the Star Beacon sports desk, but how yours truly, and in full disclosure, these pages, have never been the same.

God Bless you, Karl...

P.S. The photo that appears at the end of this column is Karl with Olympic swimming gold medalist Diana Munz, taken at the Spire Institute by the great Bill West.

It was the last photo ever taken of Karl... and, boy, would he love it!

Text Only
  • Spartans knock around Dragons

    After being cooped up in gymnasiums for the better part of the season so far, the Conneaut and Lakeside softball teams were just happy to get onto a diamond. Playing for the first time in nearly a week, the Spartans toppled the Dragons, 11-2, Thursday afternoon at Lakeside.

    April 18, 2014

  • PV can’t get past Mathews

    Thursday afternoon at Pymatuning Valley, the visiting Mathews Mustangs were able to do what every coach hopes for — execute. They played a clean game from start to finish in every facet of the game, and that carried the Mustangs to an 8-2 Northeastern Athletic Conference victory.

    April 18, 2014

  • Scholastic Statistics:

    Matthews 8, PV 2
    at PV

    April 18, 2014

  • Scholastic Schedule:


    Geneva at Edgewood (11)
    Niles McKinley at Edgewood (5)
    Conneaut at Lakeside (4:30)
    Madison at Euclid (4:30)
    Madison at Edgewood (4:30)
    Geneva at Mentor (10, DH)
    Conneaut at Madison (4)

    April 18, 2014

  • Justin Butler Justin time

    It was just four short years ago that Justin Butler was spending his fall on a soccer field.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Don A Don McCormack column: ‘Kids’ stuff’ spurs great responses

    I’m often caught more than a bit off-guard by what stories, features or columns generate responses from you, Loyal Readers, much more so than those who do not.
    For example, the column that appeared in this space a couple of days ago regarding things yours truly and my buddies did as kids prompted more than a few responses.
    A sampling, many of which were posted on my Facebook page:

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • kyle GANG GREEN

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Scholastic Schedule:

    Grand Valley at Maplewood (4:30)
    St. John at Lawrence (4:30)
    Mathews at PV (4:30)
    Fairport at Perry (7:30)
    West Geauga at Madison (4:30)
    Harvey at Riverside (4:30)
    Jefferson at Harding (5)

    April 16, 2014

  • Olivia In transition

    Pymatuning Valley graduate Olivia Holt had a distinct reason she chose to play basketball for Mount Union.
    “They do have tradition,” Holt, the daughter of Gus and Michelle Holt, said. “I’m from PV. We had a tradition of winning and working hard there. I wanted to go somewhere that tradition mattered. I knew I was going to get better by coming here.”

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Don A Don McCormack column: Spring has sprung one big leak

    Paying a Wednesday morning visit to the variety store...

    Think spring?
    If this, um, err, uh... spring... feels a bit unusual for high school baseball and softball teams in Northeast Ohio, it is, to a point.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

Sports Week in Review April 7-12
Spring Sports Practice in Ashtabula County
2014 AP BB Tourney Top 25
2014 AP BB Tourney Scoreboard
2014 AP BB Tourney News
2014 AP BB Tourney Photos
Star Beacon-Ed Batanian Senior Classic
Girls Regional Basketball Action
Week of Champions
Sports Week in Review February 21, 22
Grand Valley at Edgewood Boys Basketball
Sports Week in Review Feb. 3 to 8
Sports Week in Review January 30 to Feb. 1
Sports Week in Review January 13-18
Sports Week in Review January 10 and 11
Sports Video Archive
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AP Video