Iím no sports buff in any way, shape, or form. But I must admit a part of me is grieved today as I just learned about the passing of Joe Nuxhall. Heís known for being the youngest baseball player ever (15 when he started) and he was also a resident of my Ďsmallishí home-town, just north of Cincinnati. I never saw Joe play for the Reds, it happened before my time, but I often heard his voice streaming from the radio on 700 WLW which my great grandfather listened to faithfully. Joe began his broadcast career just one year after my birth; I grew up listening to his infamous voice.
I recall my great grandpa sitting at the kitchen table (where he spent most of his time) drinking coffee and smoking cigarettes while listening to Marty and Joe. At the time I didnít realize how much the sounds coming from that radio would become weaved into my memory.
Years later, in adulthood, I would often tune the radio into baseball. Not because I cared about the game, but because there was something in the voice of Joe that comforted me and brought me back to a time that I cherished. I was certain who ever belonged to that voice was a loving, caring man. Maybe I thought he must be a good grandpa also.
Isnít it odd how little things can reach into our soul and take hold without us knowing? Iíve been told itís the little things that really count in life. Iím a believer now.
You will be missed Joe. At the end of the game you always said you were rounding third and heading home. Well, now you have made it to your final home and I imagine a crown waiting for you there. A crown adorned with thousands of jewels symbolizing every life you ever touched.