John "Cecil" McLean
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John "Cecil" McLean, 48, long-time scoreboard operator at Father
Judge HS' basketball games and a constant at youth/CYO games in all
sports throughout Northeast Philadelphia, has died in his sleep.
"Cecil" was a true character and kind-hearted soul and brightened the
lives of everyone who shared time with him.
Arrangements: viewing, 9/28, 7 to 9 p.m., Aldworth Funeral Home,
4117 Decatur Street (near Frankford & Rhawn); funeral, 9/29, 10:30
a.m., St. Dominic RC Church, 8500 Frankford Ave.
We welcome your thoughts about "Cecil." RIP, buddy.
I have three boys -- Marc 19, Derek 13, Tim 12. All three went to (or are still
going to) St. Matt's.
Marc went to Father Judge. The two younger boys when they found out last night were very upset.
I coach the JV baseball team at Matt's. Cecil was always around. Giving out gum and just making
the kids have fun. It did not matter what the score was Cecil made sure the kids had a smile.
Maybe that is what Cecil did the best -- made sure everything was good for the kids. Maybe some
parents could learn from him.
My younger boys even called Marc down in Myrtle Beach, S.C., where he's going to school.
He called me back around 10:30 last night. "Dad, let me know if i can do anything for Cecil. It
hurts, Dad. He was a great person."
I guess heaven just got a little brighter.
-- Marc D. Ross
Cecil was a nice kid. I say that lovingly
even if he was 48 !
He would appear at a game out of nowhere and you'd be amazed at the people response he received ! Greeted like a celeb !
With him on the clock , it was tough to beat Judge at Judge ! Smile !
I will miss him and his local sports knowledge and humor !!
-- Bill Seybold
I was thinking about Cecil last night and remember an incident that
happened about 1997 or 98 or maybe a few years earlier . Region 1 High
School Junior - Senior Basketball Championship game at St Matt's with
Matt's vs St Williams . At the time , St Matt's was winning this thing
most of the time but this one year , Williams had a very good team who
was undefeated at the time.
Cecil's on the clock , 2 mins left in the game with Williams up by 10 points and in total control when all of a sudden , there's a commotion at the scorers table , something is happening to Cecil where his finger is frozen on the off button on the clock and he's in like a trance !! It takes like 25 mins to get him out of the gym to a hospital.
When the game is resumed , St Matt's proceeds to score the next 14 or 16 points and WIN THE CHAMPIONSHIP !!!
Although nothing was seriously wrong at that time with Cecil , I swear after witnessing that conclusion , God willed it because Cecil loved St Matt's !!!!
To this day , I have dubbed that win " The Cecil Factor " !!
Long Live His Memory !!!
-- Bill Seybold (again)
I want to first start out by saying how much of legend Cecil
truly was in
our neighborhood. I have known Cecil my whole life and have never heard
anybody say a bad word about him except for calling him a "turkey". God only
knows how many packs of gum he has bought and given away over the years to
so many different people. Cecil not only did the clock at St. Matts and
Judge but he also never missed a practice for either of the teams as he
would mostly take the bus everywhere. Not only was he a master at keeping
the clock but he also might possibly go down as the greatest thumb wrestler
of the world. Whenever asking Cecil for gum you always had to thumb wrestle
him and of course follow his rules of no sneak attacks. Although you would
never win he always still would give you the pack of gum and as a result
call you a turkey. There are so many stories that I have of Cecil over the
years which are all classics. Cecil will be missed and it will be wierd
going to St. Matts and Judge and not having him do the clock or just hanging
around the neighborhood.
Cecil was a funny guy to be around. Some comical stuff came
that guy's mouth. I'm gonna miss talkin' basketball with him and seeing
run the clock at Judge games. Man, why'd this have to happen? Cecil.
He never bothered anyone.
-- Tom "Hockey Puck" McKenna