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ALTON - Eddie Sholar Jr., the owner of Fast Eddie’s in Alton, had an abundance of kind words to say Monday about his friend, colleague, and mentor Mike Shannon, the Voice of the Cardinals, who died Saturday.

Sholar and Shannon are most known around the St. Louis area together for their commercials for Fast Eddie’s that they did for years.

Sholar described Shannon as first and foremost “a family man” and always there for his children.

“He was amazing,” Sholar said about Shannon. “It is very hard to describe how he was, but he was big with everything he did. He was the best high school athlete from around here and the same when he became a Cardinal baseball player and then for 50 years he was behind the microphone of the Redbirds. He had such a big booming personality, you had to just put a microphone in front of him.”

Sholar and Shannon were very close and even spent time in Major League baseball spring training in Florida together. Sholar described Shannon as “like a father figure" to him.

“He taught me a lot,” Sholar said. “He was also humble and kind and a lot of fun. He just was an amazing person.”

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Sholar and Shannon started their Fast Eddie’s advertising commercials back in the late 1990s.

“He was the Voice of St. Louis and we were blessed to have him as the Voice of Fast Eddie’s,” Sholar said. “He didn’t do a ton of commercials, so we were fortunate he did them for Fast Eddie’s.”

Sholar said Shannon was right in his element at Fast Eddie’s and doing the commercials. Sometimes, he was just at Fast Eddie’s to hang out with everyday people present.

“He was just a fun-loving, Midwestern guy,” Sholar said. “He loved the people, he wasn’t your country club type of guy, he wanted to be around regular people and that is what Fast Eddie’s is. He loved spending time at Fast Eddie’s.” Shannon also lived in the Edwardsville area for about 30 years, Sholar said, so he also considered Edwardsville home.

Asked what his favorite Shannon saying was, Sholar said: “You can’t sneak the sun by the rooster.” He said this when he talked about how a pitcher couldn’t throw a fastball past Cardinals sluggers Albert Pujols and Stan Musial.

Sholar also loved Shannon’s most famous short phrase: “Get Up, Baby!” on Cardinals home runs.

Sholar said Shannon was a simply great ambassador for St. Louis and Budweiser.

“He was just a presence,” Sholar said. “He had a natural booming voice. Even when he ordered dinner it was with that voice. He loved people and conveyed the game in his own way to people.”

What Sholar admired most about Shannon was what should be most important to everyone: “He loved his family. His family was definitely the biggest thing to him.”

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