As many of you know, I am ending my 38 year career here at Ch. 8 one week from tonight. Yesterday’s tornado outbreak was the worst I’ve seen all during my time here. Sure, I was in Dayton, Ohio (25 miles from the monster Xenia F5 killer storm) back during the super outbreak on April 3, 1974. There has not been another outbreak greater than that one during my career and, thankfully we don’t usually/never see those kinds of super tornadoes along the Gulf Coast. But yesterday’s storms were unique for two reasons. 1) we saw 3 F2 strength tornadoes and 2) the number of storms (11) was exceptional. We have seen bad tornadoes before, but not that many on the same day. I salute the forecasters at the Storm Prediction Center for giving us a 24 hour heads up as to the approaching severe weather. The good news is we have no more threats for the next 5-6 days. The bad news is it could turn stormy again late next Tuesday into Wednesday…the day I say goodbye. Stay tuned!
Back in 1988, Ch. 8 threw me a 10 year anniversary party giving me a new set of PING golf clubs. The problem? I didn’t play golf! When I was in Dayton, Ohio back in the 70s I lived next to a public golf course in Kettering. My neighbor (Late Joe Cox) was a very good golfer. So good that he had a plaque on hole number 16 (par 3) where on the same day he had 2 hole in ones on the same hole! You golfers know that is almost impossible, but he had witnesses! But I didn’t play golf. Fast forward…free clubs? I better learn to play golf. My 1st golfing buddy (Late Don Noel) and I were determined, but we really weren’t very good. I took a lesson from the late Frank Mackel at City Park where he promptly told me…”stick to your day job!” But being a little fella who couldn’t play any other sport (except bowling) because of my size, I was determined. Slowly over time, I managed to break 100 then 90 and on one magical day I shot a 79! I’m mainly a mid to upper 80s player, but I really enjoy the times I hit the ball like Tiger Woods in his prime. I’m looking to get better during retirement as I plan to play more than once a week. Since golf is such a feel game, you need to play it more often to get really good. I shall try, but if I fail, there is always the 19th hole! (translation for non-golfers – the bar!)