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Red Sox ring in retirement for cop
By Michele McPhee
Tuesday, February 8, 2005

In his four decades watching over the dugouts at Fenway Park, Boston police officer John ``Jack'' Carroll has seen countless players weep on the Red Sox bench as they endured yet another season without a World Series win.

``I have seen more defeats. I have had my heart broken,'' Carroll said yesterday, exactly a week before his 65th birthday when he will be forced to retire from the Boston Police Department as a 39-year veteran. ``This year was my last year, and it was the best year.''

Carroll spent the 2004 season exchanging secret handshakes with Manny Ramirez and bantering with Tim Wakefield. On Sept. 22, he even threw the first pitch from the mound before the Red Sox took on the Baltimore Orioles.

But Carroll will have more than memories to take into retirement.

On April 11, he also will be among the elite presented with a coveted World Series ring.

``Not in my wildest dreams did I think I would ever be wearing one of those rings,'' Carroll said yesterday as word of the ring spread through the Police Department and all the way to the Eire Pub in Dorchester, which plans to host a party for the retiring detective. ``It's quite an honor, and it was unexpected.''

It is fitting that the city of champions will celebrate a man who wielded a gun instead of a bat. Respect for Curt Schilling soared when fans spotted his blood-soaked sock as he sacrificed his health for the team. Jack Carroll nearly sacrificed his life for the city, earning the Medal of Honor after getting into a gun battle with jewel thieves in 1979.

``The city said I'm too old, otherwise I would never leave,'' he said. ``I used to pray for extra innings. Now I'd like a few more years.''

Carroll may be forced to give up his police uniform, but no one can take away his Red Sox colors.

``Every minute was special,'' he said. ``Every minute of every game.''
 

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I have worked with him, he is one of the greatest, funniest, most kowledgeable working cops I know and I have had the pleasure to work with. One story we did a drug raid once and the u/c told the dealer we were coming when we got to the door we hit that door one thousand times to break it down we didn't stop until the door was broken into splinters. They had barricaded the door with a couple of two by fours making it more difficult to enter. Alot of laughs. He helped alot of people in his day. Thanks J.J.
 

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Thats a very classy move by the Red Sox and one phenomenal retirement gift for Officer Carroll.
 
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