Nick Mascari: A Life Well Lived And A Legacy To Remember

“How lucky I am to have known somebody and something that saying goodbye to is so damn awful.” – Evan Valens

The best friendships leave a lasting impression on your heart. They also make saying goodbye excruciating. That is what so many of us are feeling as we say goodbye to Nick Mascari for the final time.

Nick was a friend who always had an ear to listen to your concerns. He’d have a friend’s back in times of battle, but he wasn’t afraid to tell friends when he thought they had it wrong. His witty sense of humor provided many of us with endless laughter. His friendship was balanced and completely authentic.

Even in this era of hyperpartisan politics, Nick didn’t have a litmus test for friendship. He considered Joe from the left-wing site, Plunderbund to be a friend. Nick believed in there being a time to campaign and a time to lead. We tried to find common ground on bipartisan issues that we could both promote. Nick talked about all of us getting together for a drink. He thought it would shock all the right people.

Nick was also humble. He didn’t toot his own horn. He played down the impact his Ohio-based website, Third Base Politics had. Each time a story was referenced by a respected publication, he acted as if it had never happened before. Over time, we discussed revamping the site. Nick wanted to shake things up and add more contributors.

Then in August 2016, Nick received a cancer diagnosis.

Nick was incredibly brave in his battle. He was optimistic, but realistic as well. A few months ago he confided that he understood the five-year survival rate for the type of lung cancer he had was grim. He told me his big regret was that he didn’t meet his beloved wife Ady earlier. He said nine years of marriage with her was simply not enough.

Nick’s loyalty can be exemplified by the fact that he remained a frustrated Cleveland Browns fan to the end. Yes, the Cleveland Browns that went 0-16. I told him many times that he was in a lifelong abusive relationship with the Browns. He was apparently aware of this but just couldn’t quit this awful team no matter how many times they betrayed him.

While he recognized the Browns weren’t going to have anything resembling a winning season anytime soon, his true sporting love was baseball and the Cleveland Indians. He relished every moment of the 22 game winning streak the Tribe put together in 2017. His heart broke when they lost in the playoffs, but he was looking forward to next season in hopes that the Tribe would end their drought and win the World Series.

On Wednesday, Nick became one of the 422 people to die of lung cancer just that day alone. Of course, he will never be just a statistic, but Nick certainly would want that number highlighted to shine a light on those still struggling with this dastardly disease. Cancer ended his life, but it will never define it.

People keep asking me how they can honor Nick. Being that he was very humble, I think he would encourage you to make a memory at a Cleveland Indians game. Head out to the Jake next season (sorry Progressive) and be part of the Tribe’s future quest to win the World Series.

If someone would like to make a financial contribution in honor Nick, please consider sending it to Taussig Cancer InstituteAmerican Cancer Society or Compassion International.

As the tears fall on my keyboard, I realize it is nearly impossible for me to pay tribute to Nick properly. He was such a dear friend to so many. While so many of his friends grieve this wonderful man, the sadness felt by his family must feel insurmountable at this time. Please keep Ady, Paige, Nicholas, Nick’s parents, siblings, and the rest of their family in your prayers.

Goodbye, Nick.

Author: Rachel

Mom. Conservative. Cleveland Indians Fan.

9 thoughts on “Nick Mascari: A Life Well Lived And A Legacy To Remember”

  1. Rachel, I am Nicks father. I thank you from the bottom of what’s left of my heart for the beautiful tribute for my son. Yes his family is devastated. We all thought he was going to beat this ….. He is in Gods house now, we will meet again!!

    1. I am so sorry, Mr. Mascari. You raised a great son. Would love to go to a Tribe game with you next season to celebrate Nick.

  2. I would have loved to have met Nick in person. It was a privilege to interact with him virtually. We shared a love of politics and baseball. I know I’ll meet him in Heaven, but that’s not much consolation today. Beautiful tribute, Rachel.

  3. Thank you for writing such a heart-felt piece about Nick. He was my husband’s brother and my wonderful brother in law. You are so right that cancer did not define him. He never complained and kept moving forward knowing the future was uncertain. Such a humble heart he had. He will be missed every minute of every day.

    Kati Mascari

  4. Rachel – Thank you for the very nice article about Nick. The comments about the Browns were spot on. Nick, Robert and I every Sunday for the past 10 years texted about 50 comments a game about their “unique” style of play (Hey, at least we got Lebron’s championship for the Cleveland!). We watched OSU football games together like the Championship game which were more fun because they actually won! 🙂 I remember when he was on the BBC to talk about the election. He just casually mentioned it. I was like “Can I listen?”. He was so humble about it. I thought it was a huge deal, but he was so mellow about it. He got great seats behind home plate for an Indians game that we went to. Nick, Robert and I were in in the 3rd row and had a great time this past summer. I remember visiting him in the ICU which seemed so long ago and just recently talking about the long term future. His illness was in check and he was in a really, really good place. Again, thank you for the wonderful summary of Nick’s character.

  5. Rachel thank you for paying tribute to Nick, he was honest and defiant, and people respected him for those qualities. On his social media profile he wrote that he was a Christian, husband and father, and I was inspired by that. I’ll be keeping his family in prayer, and you Rachel (I know how you loved working with him).

  6. I am blessed to have known my cousin growing up, wonderful article Rachel. I admire him greatly, he will be missed in this world.

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