The news of Mel Simon's death resonated loudly throughout the Indiana Pacers organization yesterday. His many successful roles in life with the Pacers, the city of Indianapolis, shopping malls and his plethora of donations and charity-work meant the man had a larger than life effect on people across the city, state and nation.
Mel Simon meant everything for Pacers fans. He saved the franchise from moving to Sacramento in 1983, and he became the embodiment of a great owner throughout the rest of his career behind-the-scenes of the franchise. But, amazingly, the Pacers were just a small part of Simon's life, and the many sentimental and historical links after the jump recognize his brilliance as a businessman, sportsman and philanthropist.
- Kudos to the Indianapolis Star for the great coverage of remembering Simon and his achievements yesterday. Columnist Bob Kravitz looks back at how Simon's purchase of the Pacers, which was done out of charity for the city, began a wave of prosperity and life into the city of Indianapolis.
- Star reporter Mike Wells spoke with NBA commissioner David Stern about Simon's impact on the Pacers and the NBA. Former Pacers star Jermaine O'Neal and former coach Rick Carlisle also add some great sentiments.
- Family and friends provide their memories of Mel Simon to the Star.
- Here is a closer look by the Star to show where Simon donated his money (arts, health and education), and here is a timeline of Simon's rise to fortune from his humble roots.
- The Indiana Business Journal notes that Indianapolis wouldn't be the same without Mel Simon. Even that is a huge understatement of his impact on the city.
- The Pacers mourn the passing of their co-owner and leader.
- Simon became a major philanthropist for Indiana University, and the Indiana Daily Student examines how big of an impact he had on the university.
The radio airwaves were also making noise as friends had plenty of great stories and memories to share about Mel Simon affecting them personally and the state of Indiana. All of the following links go directly to audio clips.
- Dan Dakich spoke with Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard on 1070 The Fan. [Audio Link]
- Also on 1070 The Fan, Kravitz and Eddie jumped on the story as they interviewed former team president Donnie Walsh, Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay, NBA commissioner David Stern, and Pacers Sports and Entertainment president Jim Morris. [Audio Links]
- 1260-WNDE's JMV also made the rounds with Mel Simon memories by speaking with Donnie Walsh, Jim Morris, and former Star columnist and IBJ writer Bill Benner. [Audio Links]