Lou Gehrig delivered one of the most famous speeches the baseball world has ever known. As he said goodbye to New York Yankees fans around the world in 1939, Gehrig made a statement that has become just as synonymous with the legend as the unfortunate disease that led to his death.
In front of his fans at Yankee Stadium, Gehrig said, “I am the luckiest man on the face of the earth.”
Admittedly, I am no legend, but I understand what Gehrig was feeling when he said those famous words.
For 10-plus years, I have had the honor of watching some of the best athletes in the state perform at the high school level. I have witnessed all-state performers, future NFL players, state champions and pro golfers, all in one of the greatest small towns in America. I tried to convey what I witnessed to readers of this newspaper every day. It was a task I took with great pride and excitement because I knew how important sports are in this town.
The time has come for me to begin the next chapter of my life, however.
It is with a heavy heart but peace of mind that I announce it is time to move on. Today is my last day at the Times-Enterprise, the place that gave a young, unknowing graduate from the University of Georgia a shot he longed for in 2002. It's a place that I will always be grateful for. I learned so much during my tenure here. I won awards, learned from some of the best journalists around and developed close friendships with people I worked with, both at the paper and in the community.
But there comes a time when a man must make a decision that could alter the course of his life. For me, that moment occurred a couple of weeks ago when I accepted a public relations job at the University of Georgia campus in Tifton. God provided me this opportunity and for that I am grateful. He also allowed me to work at the Times-Enterprise, to which I will always be thankful.
This is a great opportunity for me and my wife, Samantha, and two children, Millie and Tucker (who will join the family in late February).
We are bound for my hometown of Tifton. Rest assured, however, Thomasville and the Times-Enterprise will always be a second home to me.