Photographs of the many Fordham University students that were touched over the years by Shannon Forde on their field trips to Mets games that she coordinated with Jay Horwitz for Professors John Cirillo and Dr. Ron Jacobson accompany this article.
By John Cirillo
Beautiful Shannon Dalton Forde, the Mets angelic and energetic senior director of public relations, knocked on heaven’s door on Friday. She was welcomed with a loving embrace; then God took her by the hand and said “thank you.”
Thank you for being the adoring wife to John, and adoring mother to Nicky and Kendall. Everyone adored you, too, especially your family.
Thank you for sharing the heavy public relations load with your surely devastated mentor and boss Jay Horwitz; you defined the protégé-mentor relationship for the ages. The void is immeasurable.
Thank you for taking great pride in and having such great passion for the business that we chose. Style and grace under pressure were your watchwords.
Thank you for so deftly handling the delicate balance of “two masters,” the Mets players and organization, and the media, handling it with aplomb, and never missing a beat.
Thank you for defining the term media relations, and for politely scolding the media when you felt appropriate. As Mike Vaccaro wrote in Sunday’s New York Post, after a not-so-nice column, “her first words to me would be ‘I’m so mad at you!’ But because she didn’t have an unkind fiber in her, the conversations would always end with a smile, a laugh, and a thoughtful word or three.”Thank you for finding the time to positively impact countless students and future industry leaders on their class visits to the ballyard, especially the kids from the Fordham Sports Summer Institute. As your fond co-Mets publicist Ethan Wilson said: “Shannon really loved extending her passion for PR and baseball to high school and college students.” You brought great joy and great wisdom into their lives. The impact can never be measured, and that includes the professors.
Thank you for being “one of the kindest and nicest people any of us ever knew… all of us will carry your spirit (and hopefully good nature) with us going forward,” said Mets senior vice president David Newman.
Thank you for that kindness, spirit and good nature.The last words on the final quote sheet are from the good Lord himself: “I know your arrival here came way too early, and countless are heartbroken, but I needed to put someone in charge of the angels, and there’s no one better than you.”