This will not be a typical Studious Metsimus post. It will contain no pictures, no poor attempts at humor and no Joey Beartran. It is also a post I would have preferred never to have written. But alas, when one of us, a fellow blogger and Mets fan, passes away, it's something that must be done.
I felt a connection with Dana Brand through our words and through our mutual love of the Mets. Although I never met him in person, we exchanged an occasional e-mail or twelve, discussing various topics such as writing, our special bonds with our mothers, and of course, our beloved Mets. Through those e-mails, it was clear that Dr. Brand had an unbridled passion for the men in orange and blue that was rivaled by very few people in not just the blogging community, but the entire Mets community. His books, Mets Fan and The Last Days of Shea, put that passion into words, in a way that so few people have been able to match.
I have been a Mets fan for thirty years. However, I consider myself a neophyte in the blogging community, not writing about the Mets until they had already played a month's worth of games at Citi Field. Dana Brand was a Mets fan since the team's inception. Both of his books were penned while Shea Stadium was still hosting baseball.
Shea is no longer with us, having been replaced by Citi Field. Now Dana Brand has left us unexpectedly at the all too young age of 56. However, there can be no replacement for Dr. Brand. He was a charming, eloquent and highly respected man, who wrote from his heart and was willing to share it as well. I did not have to know him personally to know that. I could read it in the messages we shared with one another and I can see it from the outpouring of love and respect from our fellow Mets bloggers upon hearing of his passing.
Rest in peace, Dana Brand (1954-2011). Although you are no longer be with us, your passion for the team you loved will always live on.