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Buchalter Says Goodbye

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by HeinekenMan, Jun 11, 2007.

  1. HeinekenMan

    HeinekenMan Active Member

    This column appeared as part of a two-page spread in Sunday's paper.


    Bill told me just two weeks ago that the event I was covering was the last one he would attend as a member of the Orlando Sentinel.

    It was kind of odd to be covering a track meet when the real story was this great fella helping run the meet. When he told me it was the end of the line for him, I just didn't know how to respond. It was like having someone tell you they only had two weeks to live.

    Bill made sports journalism his life. He sets a great example for the next generation. No matter how many awards I win and no matter how much cash I rake in during my own journalism career, I'll always measure my success by how well I measure up to legends like Bill.

    He knows so much about the athletes he covers that I was ashamed to admit just how little I knew when the two of us were standing side by side at the state track meet this year. He declined a cup of coffee that day and asked if anyone wanted it. I was quick to accept, but I felt terrible and asked three times if he was sure he didn't want it. Well, I never told Bill this, but there was a fly floating in that cup.
  2. HejiraHenry

    HejiraHenry Well-Known Member

    What a great guy. Crossed paths with him on the Olympic beat and he was always unfailingly upbeat and helpful.
  3. chazp

    chazp Active Member

    Great column, hope he has a happy retirement. The line about parents having changed is so true, sounds like he's dealt with his share of crazy prep parents.
  4. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    Good luck, Bill. I was in Florida during his years and his name was gold.

    I'm just astonished at 40 years on the preps beat. Really takes a special breed these days. Heck, probably a lot of luck too with the business being what it is.
  5. FreddiePatek

    FreddiePatek Active Member

    There are a lot of prep writers and prep editors out there today who unknowingly owe a lot of what they do to Bill. He was the pacesetter. Enjoy your retirement, Bill. You richly deserve it.
  6. Creig Ewing

    Creig Ewing Member

    For those who don't know, Buchalter is a legend in prep sports writing circles.

    He was huge in football recruiting. Kept up with it before all the rivals.coms and everything. Twenty years ago, we'd put his list of football prospects on 1-900 lines and make a mint with people calling in to see who Florida and FSU and everyone was getting.

    Bill also knew everyone. And was always on the phone. Even his sig had him with the phone stuck to his ear.

    For the past 30 years or so, he was probably the best-known staffer at the Orlando Sentinel, though most of the folks there probably wouldn't realize it.

    Bill also gave me my start in journalism, snagging me off the obit desk to do high school features (for free!) and cover games and especially track meets.

    Track was his favorite and I spent many a nights at Winter Park High School's track because of it.

    Bill was also a great ambassador for the paper, and they will miss him.

    Good luck, Bill.
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