Just a few years ago. . . okay, more than just a few. . . I was fresh out of college and not quite sure what I wanted to do with my Communications degree. Without a job lined up, I came home to New Martinsville and thankfully was given an internship opportunity at WWVA Radio in the news department.
Fellow Grove City?College alumni David Demarest took me under his wing and showed me some of the ins and outs of the radio news business. One of our first things to cover was a trial in front of Judge W. Craig Broadwater. I had never been in a courtroom before, so it was all certainly new and interesting to me. I could quickly see that Judge Broadwater was a wise and kind man. I instantly liked him.
Honestly, I don't remember much else about that first courtroom experience, but my impression of Judge Broadwater was a lasting one.
I later found out he was a native of Paden City. Then when he was appointed to the federal bench I was happy for him and proud of our "hometown boy". When he later died of cancer, I was saddened by the news.
And now this past week he was memorialized with the naming of the W. Craig Broadwater Federal Building and United States Courthouse in Martinsburg.
I know his friends, family, and Paden City High?School classmates are very proud of his accomplishments and his character. For without his character, such an honor would never have been bestowed.
Many people achieve great things, but only those who get there with class, wisdom, and character are so righteously honored for them.
Judge Broadwater surely never knew me. He wouldn't have known my name or face. But he made an impression on me. I can only imagine what he did for those whose lives he truly touched.
He was surely a man deserving of the honor bestowed last week.