The Dodgers' longtime chef Dave Pearson passed away Saturday afternoon after a battle with lung cancer. He was 75.
Pearson had worked for the team for over 50 years. He primarily prepared meals in the Dodger press dining area, named "Dave's Diner," and served everyone from team executives, broadcasters and the media. Dave Pearson recently told Bill Plaschke of the LA Times:
"The best part of my job is cooking food that makes people happy," he said. "If I can't get them my food, how am I going to make them happy?"I can vouch for how happy his cooking can make you feel. I had the pleasure of enjoying a meal at "Dave's Diner" the onetime I worked the press box.
Pearson worked daily at the stadium until a few months ago when a bad cough lead to a Stage 4 lung cancer diagnosis. Below are some great stories written about Dave below:
- Bill Plaschke at the LA Times, "Dodger Stadium chef Dave Pearson savors life as he battles lung cancer."
- Cary Osborne at Dodger Insider, "Dodger Stadium beloved chef Dave Pearson passes away."
- Via Jill Painter at the LA Daily News, "Longtime Dodgers chef steps up to the plate for television debut on Cooking Channel."
- Via Ron Cervenka at Think Blue LA, "Behind every great man there stands a great chef – even for Vin Scully."
Pearson worked at various locations within Dodger Stadium for more than 50 years, creating sumptuous meals for a vast array of individuals, including sports greats, Hollywood stars and even presidents of the United States. While food preparation was what he enjoyed most, Pearson’s hobbies included model trains, building dollhouses for his granddaughter, travel, tennis and a huge love for jazz music.
A native of Brooklyn who cheered the Dodgers as a child, Pearson moved with his mother to Southern California at age 16. After learning to cook at a small restaurant in Boyle Heights, Pearson earned a part-time job at Dodger Stadium, launching a career that would span decades.
“Dave always took tremendous pride in his work and it was reflected in the countless creative meals he prepared for all the staff and guests through the years at Dodger Stadium,” said Dodgers’ President and CEO Stan Kasten. “’Dave’s Diner’ will never be the same.”
“Besides being a wonderful cook, Dave had a great personality,” Scully said. “Regardless of the demands that came with serving so many people at a venue like Dodger Stadium, he always maintained his composure. To look at Dave, everything was always fine. He was always smiling. He was a great gift to us, both his cooking and the type of person he was. He will be deeply missed.”
Pearson is survived by his wife of 10 years, Sherry, his daughters and three grandchildren.Watch Dave Pearson with Mo Rocca of the Cooking Channel below. He shows Mo the proper way to crack an egg and gave him a new nickname.
Funeral arrangements are pending.
The photo above is of Yasiel Puig with Dave Pearson, via Dodger photographer Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers.
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