Friday, November 16, 2007

The old lefthander rounded third and headed to heaven...

I ran downstairs here at work this morning and every day the ladies out front put a quote on the messageboard. Today it read: "Rounding Third and Headed for Home" - Joe Nuxhall - 1928-2007. I nearly froze and tears started to well in my eyes.

If you're not from Cincinnati, it might not have much meaning to you. But, Joe Nuxhall WAS Reds baseball. When I was a kid, every game was announced by Marty & Joe. My dad loved to listen to those two and whenever he would take me to games, we'd always look up at the WLW booth to them with their broadcasting gear on. Sometimes they'd wave down to us because we'd get there early. Dad would sometimes bring a radio and listen while he watched. Why? Because they seemed to make the game better. Even if the Reds were losing, you at least got to hear the banter between Marty & Joe. Joe spent SIX DECADES with the Reds...

In the summer of 1994, my dad was very sick from his cancer and unable to really get out of the house. We couldn't go to the games, so dad watched them on TV and of course listened to the radio. I remember how exciting it was that Marty & Joe sent my dad well wishes via the radio - they told him to get better. We know how that story went, but I was just so glad to hear them say that to dad. It meant a lot to him. (My brother had asked them to say something to dad on the radio - which they happily obliged)

I guess it's another ending for me in terms of memories of my dad. I have some that I cherish and most of the time they revolve around Reds games because that was "me and dad's time". I can remember being tore-up about Riverfront when they imploded it to build Great American. Why? Because my dad and I went to Riverfront. Listening to the games on the radio are not the same. Why? Because it's not Marty & Joe. I know things change, but I'm not always ready to embrace them. I'm emotional that way, especially when it comes to my dad.

You'll be sorely missed, Joe. I know my dad will be happy to see a familiar face, but here in Cincinnati, Reds Baseball will never be the same.



Edited to add this photo. It's of my brother and Joe here a few months ago. He just sent it to me. Priceless...

5 comments:

morris tsai said...

Ginger,

That's so true. We'll definitely miss the "old left hander".

Morris

Tina said...

Ginger- I don't think anyone could have said this better than you....Thanks for this wonderful post.
With tears in my eyes in Mason,
Tina

Heather said...

We truly indeed lost a great guy. He will be missed. :(

Barb said...

Lovely post, Gin. I got all teary on Friday morning when I heard about Joe. Joe was everything that is good and right about Cincinnati and people in general. Lovely photo with your brother and Joe.

Jill said...

It was very sad to read about the passing of Joe. I was also sad when they knocked down Riverfront. That represented Reds baseball to me. I was a diehard Reds fan as a very young girl and can remember my first trip there like it was yesterday - 9/21/1971. I remember walking into the stadium for the first time and being in awe and thinking that it was unbelievable that I was actually there. (I only live about 90 miles away! LOL - Small world for a little gal). The old lefthander will be missed by anyone who knew Cincinnati baseball.