John Hart and his beautiful wife Sandy stood by Tom “T-Bone” Giordano’s bedside and they looked at each other with true love and affection. T-Bone looked at John the way a father would look at his son after hitting a game winning home run. Sandy held his hand the whole time.
The relationship has been one that deals with love and loyalty and respect. When Tom was inducted into the Ted Williams Hall of Fame, John was his presenter. The thing that T-Bone loved the most about what John said in his presentation was when John said “my friend, my father, Tom Giordano.”
T-Bone asked me, “Did you hear that?” I said, “Yes I did.” Then he gave me a wink.
T-Bone has given so many people an opportunity in baseball, but the one that gave him his most satisfaction was John Hart and his great success in the game. The other thing that was a very big deal to Tom was the fact John never let him down. T-Bone has done things through the years for people and has been disappointed by many because sometimes people just don’t do the right thing. T-Bone has taken many chances on some that he was warned that the opportunity that he gave certain individuals might back fire, but he would take a chance anyway hoping that he could change a life. I know, I witnessed a few of those.
Tom Giordano would never say it because he is too humble of a man, so I will say that John Hart was T-Bone’s greatest discovery and even to this day when T-Bone would see Hart on the MLB Network, he would have the greatest smile of pride on his face.
Twice this weekend, John and Sandy came over to see him. I am so saddened because of the fact that it was the last time the mentor would ever get to see his pupil. Before John and Sandy left, T-Bone tried to tell them something but due to his illness the words didn’t come out. When I got there someone told me what happened. When T-Bone woke up from his nap I asked him what did he want to say to John before he left and in a barely audible and raspy voice he said to tell them that he “loved them.”
John Hart has been a very lucky young man because he has had a truly wonderful baseball father in Tom Giordano. I’m even luckier because I’ve had three baseball fathers…. George Steinbrenner, Billy Martin and of course…
Tom ‘T. Bone ‘ Giordano.
I’m sorry John. I do feel your pain!
Yet through it all, T-Bone did it his way.