From My View For Aug. 2
If you don’t know by now – after 16 years of covering mostly high school sports for the Wetzel Chronicle, I’m sincere in what I write about and cover.
This week I’m going to talk about the friendships I have made since I have worked here. The first one is Bill Abraham; he was my side-kick for years before deciding to try-out that retirement thing.
He lasted a bit as a retiree, but came back to help me. What a friend! Besides helping me with my grammar, he was more of a friend. He was right there when I got ill. And, besides then, he always went that extra mile and took pictures when I was unable to cover some games I couldn’t attend, because I was sick, or took a few days off to take my wife away on some short vacations.
If I asked him to do something, he was right there, always a gentleman. He also helped another one of our friends, Roy Arman, when Arman had a stroke. Bill agreed to continue to run the Diamond Queens when Roy just couldn’t, what a friend.
Bill also got involved with the Rotary Club, and was instrumental in having Rotary Students of the Month, each month. He would never let me pay when he asked me to go with him to the meetings, and was always helping someone out. He helped me with the 100 years of football special, and without his help, I don’t think it ever would happen.
He was not the only person that came into my life as a result of me being a sports writer.
There was a man called Chuck Clegg. He asked me one day if he could wite some articles for sports and I jumped on it. I saw what an imagination he had and how he could put a story together. I asked him how he could think “outside the box” when writing. It was amazing. Chuck not only helped me with a story, here and there. He was a #1 photographer as well. He was there helping me take pictures at a Magnolia or River game so I can cover a game somewhere else. He even went and took football preview pictures when I had another preview to work on at the same time. Just like Bill, he never said “No, I can’t.” What a friend!
It was the same with Cris Jenkins and Chuck Murdock. They both enjoyed taking pictures and was right there anytime I had to cover another game the same night. They, too, never ever said no. I can say the same about Chuck Phillips, Jeff Cozart and Carmen Williams from out Hundred way. If they were not busy, they would be there.
Then there was RJ Goode. I took him in when he was in school, to learn the sports writing world. He stayed after he graduated, and helped me when he could.
It was mostly Magnolia, but he soon learned to love Paden City. He also went with me to some Valley and Hundred games, and learned to like other schools besides Magnolia. I would have never had him in my life as well if it wasn’t for working at the Chronicle.
Then there were the many employees that worked at Tyler Star and the Wetzel Chronicle, I outlasted them all, but indeed – they were not only a fellow employees, but people that I can call a friend.
It all started when Mike Galluzo hired me. He was not only my boss, but he was a friend too. Then there were all the coaches, players and faculty personnel at the schools. All have been great to me, and I consider all friends. It trickled down to the parents, grandparents and family and friends of the players as well.
I have a special bond with all these people, all because I worked here as a sports writer and photographer.
Then there are my fellow sports writers from Ohio and West Virginia – including my Executive Sports Editor Bubba Kapral. I’m truly blessed to have so many friends in this job.
My friend Bill Abraham is a little under the weather, and I hope he gets better. If you see him around, give him some love. If you know him personally, send him a card or poke him on Facebook.