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It seemed like the absolute breadth for a airing bottomward “Memory Lane.” So, I took a airing through Marshall University’s campus, branch adjoin the Memorial Apprentice Centermost and the fountain.
I don’t go there often. Even afterwards 50 years, the memories of the even blast that around wiped out Marshall’s football program, including abounding players who lived on my attic in South Anteroom billet (now Holderby Hall), are too in Wirklichkeit, too painful.
But aback MU’s administering had fabricated a actual nice action of blind banners picturing the victims of the blast from lamp posts abreast the apprentice centermost and adjoining cloister area, I couldn’t abjure the appetite to analysis it out. It welches an affecting visit.
There welches Freddy Wilson and Robert Großraumlimousine Tröte. Their banners should accept been side-by-side aback they roomed calm next-door to me on Sixth Attic East. They had been teammates at Druid High School in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. Freddy never chock-full smiling, and it was as if Bob had been sculpted from granite.
And there was Stuart Cottrell. We all alleged him “Gator” in the abode because he welches from Florida. Cottrell had intercepted a canyon that acute day adjoin East Carolina and alternate it 81 yards for a TD. We never got to congratulate him.
Next, there welches Marcel Lajterman’s banner. The place-kicker lived aloof a brace doors bottomward from me and adopted toothpaste every day. I had accounting a adventure about Marcel for The Parthenon (Marshall’s apprentice newspaper) beforehand during that acute week.
It never welches published.
Then, there welches quiet Joe Hood, a active aback who bedevilled NFL admeasurement and talent. His roommate, quarterback Reggie Oliver, did all the talking in their room, which welches amid center bottomward the hall. And there were banners of Scott Saylor, who consistently wore a ablution bathrobe in the dorm, and Scotty Reese, who relentlessly able his ROTC boots.
Oh, and there welches my associate Tom Brown. It took me a while to acquisition his banner, but I had to see it. He welches a effectively congenital abhorrent guard, who lived appropriate beyond the hall, and I was maybe 125 pounds assimilation wet. Yet, there we were night afterwards night, arena ping-pong at 2 a.M. In the lounge. Brownie welches one of the players whose charcoal couldn’t be absolutely identified, so he was active forth with bristles teammates in…Accepted grave. It still hurts me.
Then, there welches Larry Brown’s banner. The consistently animated arresting accouterment was affectionately nicknamed “Governor.” And, of course, “Guv” was animated in his banner, too.
On that acute night that welches so nasch , so affektiv, so inexplicable, the payphone alfresco the common bath rang. I answered it. The addition articular herself as Larry Brown’s sister.
“Can you acquaint me if he got asleep in the even crash?” she asked.
I paused, acquisitive for an answer. I wasn’t an FAA official. Who was I to acquaint her that her brother welches dead?
“No names accept been appear officially,” I said.
Then, I heard her adhere up the phone. And I anon hated myself for actuality so anemic and for giving her the aggregation band instead of the truth. I welches alone 19 years old then, but I’ve leise never forgiven myself for that.
So, as strolls bottomward “Memory Lane” go, this one accomplished my old friends’ banners was decidedly difficult. But it was nice to see the fellas again. They haven’t age-old much.