Jean Deplacido Death, Obituary – We prefer to think of the North Shore sports community as a huge family since everyone is so supportive of each other. Everyone involved in local athletics—athletes, coaches, athletic trainers, administrators and officials, fans and volunteers—is bound together by a burning enthusiasm for the sport that is ingrained in the hearts and minds of so many of us.
However, there was only one individual who could really lay claim to the title of “The Mother of North Shore Sports,” and that was Jean DePlacido. On Sunday afternoon, we were shocked to learn of the passing of Jean, our cherished sports journalist of more than 40 years. A legacy that will never be replicated in its entirety is left behind by the 79-year-old: A pathfinder who actually penned tens of thousands of articles about athletes of all ages and levels of competition, from professional ballplayers to Little Leaguers, from Boxford to Swampscott and everywhere in between.
In addition to having resided in the same house in West Peabody for more than half a century, Jean’s primary roles in life were as a devoted wife, mother, and grandmother. Lisa, Michelle, John, David, and Michael were among the five children that she and her late husband, John, had, and the couple also had four grandkids. She doted on all of them, and despite the fact that she covered a lot of sporting events for the newspaper, she particularly treasured the times when she was able to cheer for her own relatives at things like sporting events, plays, and other such activities.
When it came to athletics on the North Shore, she reported on basically everything, and by literally everything, we mean everything. She covered three different sports on a consistent basis: softball in the spring, girls basketball throughout the winter months, and St. John’s Prep football in the fall. She had been covering football at St. John’s Prep since the early 1980s. She gave her time for the Peabody High School Hall of Fame Committee and was a huge fan of covering sports in Peabody, the city that she now calls home.
Because of her openness to tackling any kind of narrative or being involved in any kind of endeavor, she has become a well-known figure not just in this region but even outside it. She always approached her tasks with the same level of enthusiasm, which made her stand out from the crowd no matter the topic. Whether it was the major leagues or the little leagues, she handled each article with the same level of attention and precision.
Her daughter Michelle, who in more recent years would chat to her mother every day about her assignments and what games she’d be covering, described her mother as “a proud, strong woman who never slowed down in what she did.” “She was a proud, strong woman who never slowed down in what she did,” said Michelle.
“My mother adored all aspects of sports, including playing, watching, and writing about them. Her favorite sports were those played at the elementary school, middle school, and high school levels, and she followed the careers of her favorite athletes into college and beyond.