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Local Hero

My brother is visiting from Portland, and we decided to go to the Dodgers vs. Angels exhibition game tonight.

I head over to Craigslist to hunt down some tickets. The first guy I call is Carlos, who is out in Calabasas but who knows Pasadena very well. Turns out he went to John Muir High School (very near my house) and also to Allendale Elementary, where my sons went. Alas, Allendale is no longer with us–a victim of declining enrollment in the Pasadena Unified School District. Carlos sounds like a great guy, but I’m not up for driving out to Calabasas, so…

I keep searching and find an even better deal (that includes the all-important premium parking pass).  I call the guy up, and he’s driving on the 210 freeway west, heading home. As it happens, he lives about a mile away from me.  I tell my son, “Hey! Some guy named Sean Porter has four tickets and  he’s going to deliver them!” He says, “Sean Porter…that sounds familiar.”

Turns out that it is the Sean Porter who is the subject of the film Gridiron Gang.  He was instrumental in assembling a football team at Camp Kilpatrick, a juvenile detention center. More about the real-life story and the film here.

If you live in LA long enough, you see celebrities.  I’ve seen Debbie Reynolds, Ali McGraw, Dean Paul Martin (before the plane crash), Tim Roth, etc. etc.  It’s kind of fun, but there is a difference between an icon and a hero.

Today I met a real hero.