Death of Derek Aucoin
Quebec baseball icon Derek Aucoin passed away on December 26. He died at the age of 50 of brain cancer. Alex Agostino reacts to the death of his friend and colleague.
Derek Aucoin was a big baseball pitcher in the 90s, especially wearing the Montreal Expos uniform to appear on the mound in two games. It was also part of the New York Mets subsidiaries. In recent years, he had changed his baseball glove to a microphone Good evening athletes, a broadcast from 98.5 FM. He was also an analyst at TVA Sports.
The diagnosis was made a year and a half ago, in the summer of 2019, when there was still baseball on amateur fields and in stadiums all over North America. The pandemic had not yet appeared. For Derek Aucoin, it was a different kind of ordeal he had to face. Glioblastoma multiforme, an incurable form of brain cancer.
Derek Aucoin is gone head up (title of his biography, written by Benoît Rioux) on Boxing Day, and went to provide for his wife Isabelle and his son Dawson, among others.
The next day, there were several to pay tribute to him, as much from the sports scene as from the political field. The organizations of the Montreal Canadiens, Montreal Impact, Toronto Blue Jays have commented on the sad news. Just like the Minister of Education and the Minister for Women’s Status, Isabelle Charest. The Mayor of Montreal, Valérie Plante, Denis Coderre, Pierre Karl Péladeau, Mitch Garber, as his colleagues from 98.5 FM, including Montarville resident Alex Agostino, also praised him.
A tragic shock
“It was my wife who told me about her death when the news came on TV. All at 98.5, we knew it was not going well for Derek. In the last week he had stopped answering. We knew he was sick. We knew he was not well. We knew that his death was inevitable. But it is still tragic. His departure gave me a shock “, shares Alex Agostino, who spoke to the newspaper The hills.
The Philadelphia Phillies supervisor in major league baseball draws a parallel between Aucoin’s cancer and that of Gary Carter, who died in 2012 of the same glioblastoma multiforme. “It’s a cancer that was very virulent. I hope he did not suffer. He never gave up. The most important thing for Derek was to share the joy. The audience discovers it “, testifies Alex Agostino.
On the phone, he describes Derek Aucoin as an athlete, a young father, a big man, a giant. He was 6 feet 8 inches tall. “He was tall as a person, but he was also a man bigger than life. He had that presence. A force of nature. “
The interviews he gave in the last few hours have allowed Mr. Agostino to reflect on life and take the time to remember the good times spent with Derek Aucoin. Over the years, the two have found themselves on the same path several times.
In the early ’90s, Derek and Alex worked together in the Quebec Elite Junior Montreal Baseball League, the first to play for the Bisons de Saint-Eustache, the second to pitch for the Dukes of Longueuil. They then met again at the Montreal Expos. The man from Saint-Bruno-de-Montarville was a scout for the Montreal organization. Derek was then a young ball player for Expos. So on the radio in the 2000s, they came together again, the athlete in the animation, the scout as a collaborator. “With Derek, life went well. He not only talked about sports, he enjoyed interacting with the world. The people around him felt good. He had an impact. “
Last year, Derek Aucoin and Alex Agostino found themselves on the road again, but this time, literally. “Six months after learning about his illness, I had the opportunity to go for a walk with Derek in his corner. It was something that was dear to him. He wanted to take the time to walk around with a few people around him. I was one of them. I thought I would take a few minutes, but this meeting took longer than expected. We talked about baseball, his parents, life. He was positive despite the disease. When I left him that night, he was the one who encouraged me! But he was like that, Derek; he did well around him and made people a better person, “recalls Alex Agostino.
With his attitude, his strength, his courage, his grace and gratitude, “Derek Aucoin leaves his son this legacy of never giving up,” said Alex Agostino.
A unique status
In 1996, Derek Aucoin became the only Quebecer to be signed and developed by the Montreal Expos to reach the big club of the greats. “It was Claude Raymond and Denis Boucher, acquired through transactions. But Derek Aucoin’s story is different and unique. Although he only played two games, he is the only Quebecer that Expos has signed and developed in their organization. His dream was to throw for the team in childhood. Whether it’s 2 or 200 games, anyway, he did it! “
In October 2019, Derek Aucoin was incorporated into the Panthéon du baseball du Québec. So on December 15, the former baseball pitcher was awarded the medal to the National Assembly for his social commitment and his human values. “He did not have a long baseball career, but Derek will have left his mark,” concluded Alex Agostino.