Taylor's Thoughts: One man's junk

Sometimes treasures can be found in your own pile of possessions stored away in an attic somewhere. Such was the case when I came across one of my own favorite possessions as a youngster when I discovered a program from a visit the University of Kentucky Wildcats made to the Richmond City Park on Aug. 30, 1980.

As they say, one man's junk is another man's treasure.

Sometimes those treasures can be found in your own pile of possessions stored away in an attic somewhere. Such was the case when I came across one of my own favorite possessions as a youngster when I discovered a program from a visit the University of Kentucky Wildcats made to the Richmond City Park on Aug. 30, 1980.

Doing the math, I was nine then, but it was one of my first close encounters with any member of the Kentucky basketball team.

The team made the visit on behalf of the Champions for Home Meal Delivery, an organization that provided meals to assist handicapped, elderly or disadvantaged citizens at that time.

As I flipped through the pages of the program, some familiar names, along with each player's autograph, appeared on pages throughout the program. The autographs are hand-written in original ink.

A team picture, also appears, along with a couple of administration officials, including Cliff Hagan, then the school's athletics director and Larry Ivy, assistant AD in charge of finances at the time.

Being a small kid from a rural part of Madison County, with a four-channel remote control television and a basketball goal attached to the front of the garage, just getting a chance to meet some of the players was some kind of experience.

In our household, the Wildcats were the talk at the dinner table and many times, my father and I would watch games on a delayed basis. For the record, mom didn't know. She thought I was tucked away in bed.

I guess she eventually figured out why it was hard to get me out of bed and dressed for school the next morning.

Meeting and shaking hands with most members of the team at the time was one thing. Getting the autographs during the team's visit was a bonus. I even had my picture taken with Fred Cowan, which was a part of the family photo album for years, until I lost track of it somewhere along the path of time.

Among the autographs I got were those of Joe B. Hall, Leonard Hamilton, Sam Bowie, Cowan, Chris Gettelfinger, Tom Heitz, Derrick Hord, Charles Hurt, Bo Lanter, Dirk Minniefield and Chuck Verderber.

At the time, the printed program was my bragging item. I carried it with me to class and told everyone I knew about the experience of meeting the Wildcats that day.

It still seems like yesterday.


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