BOSTON (CBS) – Jim Corsi, a Newton native who made it all the way to the Major Leagues, won a World Series and pitched for the Boston Red Sox, has died from cancer. He was 60 years old.
According to his close friend, WBZ-TV Sports Director Steve Burton, Corsi "passed away from cancer peacefully overnight with his family by his side." The Red Sox said he died Tuesday at home in Bellingham.
"Way to finish strong Jim. Rest in peace my friend. We love you," Burton posted on Twitter Tuesday morning.
Corsi graduated from Newton North High School in 1979, went to Saint Leo University and eventually pitched for ten seasons in the Major Leagues. He won a World Series with the Oakland Athletics in 1989. He spent three seasons pitching for the Red Sox from 1997-to-1999. He also played for the Houston Astros, Florida Marlins and Baltimore Orioles.
"I got liver cancer, stage four, and colon cancer," Corsi told Burton in an emotional interview recorded in November that aired Sunday. "I made a mistake when I was younger by not getting a colonoscopy."
"I should have done it," he said fighting back tears. "If you're out there, don't wait. Don't be stupid. I was a professional athlete and thought I was invincible, strong. You're not. Cancer is not prejudice to anybody."
"That's my message. Don't wait," Corsi said. "You don't want to end up like this. If you get it soon enough, you'll be alright."
The family held a special wedding for his oldest daughter, Julianne, a few months ago. Jim was able to walk her down the aisle.
"It was the most important thing that he could have done," she told WBZ. "It was just so meaningful and special. It was amazing."
Corsi is survived by his four children, Julianne, Jenna, Mitch, and Joey.
"We were saddened to hear of Jim's passing after his courageous battle with cancer," Red Sox President and CEO Sam Kennedy said in a statement. "Jim's heart was so big and full of love that his legacy goes far beyond his playing career and World Series Championship. The affection he showed his family, this region, and every fan he encountered was incomparable. For me and so many others, he was the embodiment of that childhood dream to someday play for the hometown team. We were lucky to have had him as part of our Red Sox family, and extend our deepest condolences to his children, and all who knew and loved him. We lost a great one today."
"I could always count on Jim," said Red Sox Senior Vice President of Community, Alumni and Player Relations Pam Kenn. "His love and passion for the Red Sox, as well as his easy manner, constant willingness to help, and gift of great storytelling made him such a perfect representative for our organization. He brought so much to so many, with an infectious love of baseball, humor, and boundless energy and heart. We lost a great player today, but more importantly, a great friend."
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