Jerry Remy is back, broadcasting from Red Sox spring training. His return to the broadcast booth last weekend was duly reported on local news. Hearing his voice was familiar but definitely odd. He’s doing his usual color analysis, but now his broadcast may be colored by the scandal surrounding his son. When he announced his return, Remy said the broadcast booth has always been his comfort zone. The question is: will it become our discomfort zone?
Intellectually, I know that Remy shouldn’t be judged by the criminal actions of son Jared Remy, awaiting trial in October for the murder of his girlfriend, Jennifer Martel, mother of his 5-year-old daughter. Jared Remy’s situation may seem to be a parent’s worst nightmare. Jennifer Martel’s fate is immeasurably worse. Apparently Jared has been a trial for his parents much of his life. (The Boston Herald today notes run-ins with the law by Remy’s other two children as well.) At the same time, Jerry Remy has a right to earn a living, and, if the Red Sox want him back, he has a right to do it. Presumably this is an experiment in public sentiment, and that’s fine. But it’s an experiment that could blow up.
I find myself wondering how this is going to play out if earlier stories are confirmed that it was Jerry Remy who, with his wife, pressured Jennifer Martel not to seek extension of the restraining order she had previously taken out against their son Jared. Of course, the trial won’t start till the conclusion of this year’s season, and the parties are innocent till proven guilty.
Then there’s the matter of the custody battle, which is in court for a pre-trial hearing this very day, with the trial due to start March 25. Jerry Remy and his wife are fighting for custody of Arianna. For the life of me, I can’t understand, in light of everything, why they’re entitled to custody of the child who would still have her mother were it not for their son. Why it wouldn’t be better for the Martels, whose daughter was Jared Remy’s victim, to have custody is beyond me. They’ve moved here from Virginia to wrest the child from the clutches of DCF and to give the child a loving, constant home. Remy’s money and celebrity shouldn’t trump the Martels’ qualifications.
I do have compassion for the Remys, and have always enjoyed what Jerry Remy brings to the microphone on game day. Still, one wonders how much of his historical lore or anecdotal richness will be colored by the enormous distraction of his possible enabling role in son’s criminal behavior and the ick factor of the custody battle .
I welcome your comments in the section below.