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A journalist for four decades, I have written 16 articles for the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR) BioProject and Games Project. The bios include Joe Decker; Randy Hundley, founder of a Cubs baseball fantasy camp in Mesa, Arizona; Bill Faul; Charlie Hollocher; Del Howard; Don Kessinger; Salty Saltwell; Kevin Tapani; and Kerry Wood.
I’ve also put my love of baseball to good use by writing stories for SABR about Ernie Banks’ debut in the major leagues on September 17, 1953, and his 500th home run on May 12, 1970. Banks was the first African American to play for the Cubs, having come from the Kansas City Monarchs in the Negro Leagues a few weeks earlier. At the latter time, he was only the ninth player in major league history to reach the 500-homer plateau. My other Game Project contributions include the Cubs’ dramatic Opening Day victory in 1971 and Ron Santo’s major league debut in Pittsburgh in 1960.
My first version of a book in a soft cover format came in 2016 when I published “What a Ride,” a collection of columns I wrote over the years for two newspapers in Illinois and Iowa. The columns are broken down into four categories: family, personalities, politics and sports. To obtain a copy, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 319-520-6228 and leave a message. A few copies of the book still may be available at Beaverdale Books in Des Moines.
During my newspaper career I received awards from the Iowa Newspaper Association and Illinois Press Association for news writing, editorial writing, school board coverage, investigative reporting, best original column and photography.
When I’m not spending time on the computer, I enjoy bicycle riding when it’s warm, attending Iowa Cubs games during the baseball season, playing my clarinet in the Greater Des Moines Community Band, attending Golden K Kiwanis Club of Des Moines meetings, volunteering for the Food Bank of Iowa, and hanging out with my three grandkids.
More about me
Twain and me
Not only do literary great Mark Twain and I share the same birthdate, November 30, but also we lived in Keokuk, Iowa, at one point in our lives. Twain worked for his brother in a Keokuk print shop, which was responsible for one of the first Keokuk city directories. Their mother also lived in Keokuk. I was managing editor of the Daily Gate City in Keokuk for 15 years before retiring in 2014 and moving to Des Moines.
Yes, I was a Little League All-Star and played in a Wheaton-Glen Ellyn Little League All-Star Game at a field named after football legend Red Grange in Wheaton, Illinois. I singled in my only at-bat and was thrown out at the plate trying to score. The photo of me sliding into home plate even made the local paper. Unfortunately, Glen Ellyn beat us in extra innings. I still have a few programs from the game.
I have belonged to Kiwanis clubs in three cities in two states for more than thirty years: Carthage, Illinois; Keokuk; and now Des Moines. Kiwanis International was founded in Detroit, Michigan, in 1915. The worldwide organization is devoted to improving the lives of children. In August 2019, the Golden K club in Des Moines celebrated its 35th anniversary. I served as president of the 85-member organization during 2019-2020.