A farewell to people with Oklahoma ties who enjoyed the game day experience:
*Dub Hawkins starred in football and track at Madill High School. The honorable mention All-State player earned a football scholarship to Oklahoma City University. He also played basketball and baseball for the Goldbugs. The World War II veteran later was an assistant track coach at Capitol Hill High School. The educator was an avid OU football fans; he and wife VaLondia attended all home and Red River Rivalry games for 60 years.
*Spiro native Ward Williams died at age 90. He coached basketball at Boynton, Pleasant Grove and Claremore high schools before earning his PhD. at Oklahoma. The retired Cameron University faculty member played golf until his health began to fail in his late 80s. An American hero who survived the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.
*Irene Wrona, 92, was an exceptional baseball scorekeeper. She had plenty of practice. The Tulsa resident had six children, including former Chicago Cubs catcher Rick Wrona.
*Jim Crews of Tulsa was a lumber & supply store owner by trade. Off days were spent at the golf course, where he aced several holes and once won the Southern Hills Country Club senior championship. He died at age 83.
*Others with Oklahoma ties who enjoyed the game day experience: Mac Maguire, an avid outdoorsman who traveled the world to hunt and fish. ... Chad Peery was a 5-foot-8, 160-pound senior fullback/linebacker for the Mount St. Mary football team in 1994. The Oklahoma City police officer, who was recovering from previous injuries suffered during the line of duty, died at age 36 in an automobile accident. ... Darrell Cox, 67, played basketball at Leon High School. ... Ronnie Blubaugh, 79, was a die-hard Tonkawa High School football fan who loved to tell people he witnessed five of the Buccaneers' six state championship wins.
“If it wasn't for him, I wouldn't be in this position I'm in right now, living the dream, playing the game I love to play. I always thank him for that.” — Midwest City native and Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp to the Los Angeles Times on the impact Jackie Robinson made in his life.
“I don't think Tom makes decisions like that. Actually, I know he doesn't. He wants what's best for the team, and he knows that (coach Bill Belichick) does that.” — Wes Welker to Sports Illustrated's Dan Patrick, who asked Welker why New England quarterback Tom Brady couldn't get the Patriots to re-sign the former Heritage Hall star. Welker signed with the Denver Broncos.
“I think athletes always go back to the people they trust. He has a strong culture of coaches that he has a lot of respect for. I'm just a trustworthy, positive person in his life who has always been there. I love him. He's my little brother. I'm always going to look out for him.” — Oklahoma State baseball coach Josh Holliday to MLB.com on Matt Holliday, a St. Louis Cardinals All-Star who sometimes asks his big brother for advice on hitting.
Tuesday's notable birthdays:
92: If he were alive, Tuesday would be Warren Spahn's 92nd birthday. The Hall of Fame lefty was a longtime Broken Arrow resident, although he was a Buffalo, N.Y., native and spent the majority of his baseball career with the Milwaukee Braves. Five years managing the Tulsa Oilers hooked Spahn on Oklahoma.
57: Former OU kicker Uwe von Schamann, father of the game-winning, 41-yard field goal vs. Ohio State in 1977.
29: Ryan McBean, a defensive tackle out of Oklahoma State. At 6-foot-5 and 305 pounds, this Baltimore Raven can probably hammer down a lot of cake and ice cream.
Truth be told
The Oklahoman asked high school athletes: What are two things on your Bucket List?
Hayden Wood, golf, Edmond North:
“Win the Masters and hit a golf ball off the moon.”
Yareli Garcia, soccer, Southeast:
“Go to the women's World Cup, sing somewhere big.”
Malik Foxx, track and field, Centennial:
“State finalist. State champ.”