Tim Flannery received a heartfelt thank-you voicemail from Bryan Stow, who struggles to put thoughts and words together nearly three years after being severely beaten outside Dodger Stadium on opening day 2011.
Flannery, the San Francisco Giants' third base coach and musician, presented the Stow family with $96,000 during the weekend to help with Bryan's care as the father of two and former paramedic continues to deal with traumatic injuries and brain damage from the attack.
And more money is still coming from recent silent auctions and further CD sales.
Flannery and his band, The Lunatic Fringe, just concluded a series of four sold-out Northern California concerts benefiting Stow, while all dollars from purchases of Flannery's 11th album, "Outside Lands,'' released in November, go directly to Stow.
"That was, for me, kind of a gamble. People always say, 'Well, why don't you just write a check?' I always say, 'Well, I only hit nine home runs in my 10-year career, I can't just write a big check,''' Flannery said by phone Monday. "I did write a check, I wrote a check that produced a new record. ... I'm just playing the music. I'm doing the same thing I always do. For people to come and just continue the love, it's a great, great honor.''
As part of the large donation presented Saturday night, Giants reliever Jeremy Affeldt contributed $25,000 to match Flannery's initial total and former Giants great turned instructor Will Clark wrote a $10,000 check.
"I don't think we could even begin to explain how much the efforts of all the people involved mean to us,'' Stow's sister, Bonnie Stow, wrote in an email Monday. "They're all busy people, with their own lives going on, yet they take the time to put on these shows to help Bryan. It's like 'thank you' just isn't enough. Even when he's not playing these shows, Tim stays in touch with our family and sends his love to Bryan continuously. He's amazing.''
Flannery presented Bonnie Stow with the envelope of money before his show Saturday in Santa Cruz, where the Stow family lives and where Bryan is now cared for by his parents, Dave and Ann.
"She kind of went quiet and both of us kind of broke down and just held each other for a while,'' Flannery said. "I told her 'all the people who wrote checks and all the people who brought their gifts, everybody loves you and everybody loves your family.'"
Flannery's band dedicated the song "You Have My Word'' to Stow's parents. Flannery received a photo Sunday from the family of the couple holding hands during that song while on a rare evening out.
"It felt like this is a great opportunity to let the family know that people still are thinking about them. More than anything it allows them to know that people still care, people still think about them,'' Flannery said. "That has always been the story, everybody else showing up and giving of themselves. I play the music. It inspires me to just keep doing it. It's not that difficult for me doing what I always do.''
In all, Flannery held 24 concerts during the baseball offseason.
As he told his music crew and support staff of the success, "We went 24-0.''