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My last day in Hawkville: Saying thanks to all of you who have said thanks to me

Posted Mar 27, 2015

On my last day as the digital media writer at Seahawks.com, and after 36 seasons of covering the Seahawks, I want to say “Thank you” to all who have said thank you to me.


Blue Friday reflections on a final emotional day to cap what has been a wild week since announcing that I was retiring after covering the Seahawks for 36 seasons and 700 games:

WORDS OF THE DAY: HUMBLED, AND A LITTLE EMBARRASSED

I never expected the response to Monday’s announcement that I’m retiring. How could I? How could anyone?

I used my final Monday Metatarsal Musings to say thanks for the memories that I’ve been allowed to compile while covering the Seahawks since 1979, and for the past six seasons as the digital media writer at Seahawks.com.

STAT DU JOUR: THE 700 CLUB

Not that The 700 Club. This is my own exclusive 700 club. As in, how does one guy cover 700 Seahawk games over a 36-season span? Here’s how:

Games No.
Regular Season 541
Postseason 27
Preseason 132

But now, I feel it’s necessary to say “Thank you” to all those who took the time to thank me – via twitter, emails, texts, phone calls and in person. The week-long reaction has been humbling, and a little embarrassing. After writing so many stories over all these years, it’s odd to become the story. 

But the best part is that the story will continue. I might not be the one writing it, but the team that coach Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider have compiled will be in this thing for the long run. Asked at various times the past two seasons how the team would handle this or that, Carroll has not only pointed to, but named the leaders who would have an impact on supplying a solution to whatever the perceived problem was – Earl Thomas, Richard Sherman, Russell Wilson and Kam Chancellor.

I always wanted to raise my hand and offer, “Excuse me, coach, but the guys you just named are kids.”

And that’s the beauty of the team that the Seahawks have become – their best players are among their youngest players. Thomas, the free safety who has been voted to four consecutive Pro Bowls and been named All-Pro the past three seasons, doesn’t turn 26 until May. Sherman and Chancellor, the cornerback and strong safety with five All-Pro and five Pro Bowl berths between them, turn 27 next week. Wilson, who has quarterbacked the Seahawks to two Super Bowl appearances in his first three seasons, is 26.

It’s enough to make you feel old, but also enough to make you realize watching this team do it “better than it’s ever been done before” will never get old. 

How to summarize what these past 36 years have been like? Schneider took care of that in a note that he left me: “What a long strange trip it’s been.” Then he asked me in the cafeteria if I got the Grateful Dead reference.

Grateful, indeed. So once again, one last time, thank you.

RANK ’N FILE

During a week when so many have said so many nice things about me, I’d like to remember those who I worked the beat with – and put up with me:

P-I – Don Fair, Bill Knight, Glenn Drosendahl.

Times – Gil Lyons, Craig Smith, Larry Stone, Les Carpenter, Jose Romero, Bob Condotta, Jayson Jenks.

Journal-American – Greg Johns, Mike Moore, Bob Condotta.

Tacoma News Tribune – Bart Wright, Earl Luebker, John Clayton (yes, the John Clayton), Mike Sando, Wendy Carpenter, Frank Hughes, Eric Williams, Todd Dybas, Gregg Bell.

Everett Herald – Will Neesly, Bill Williamson, Todd Frederickson, Scott Johnson, John Boyle.

The columnists – John Owen, Art Thiel, Steve Rudman and Laura Vecsey at the P-I; Steve Kelley, Georg Meyers, Blaine Newnam, Jerry Brewer and Larry Stone at the Times; Dave Boling and John McGrath at the TNT; and Larry Henry at the Herald.

My former sports editors – Glenn Drosendahl (at the J-A and P-I), Don Shelton, Bill Knight, Tim Kelly, Ron Matthews, Nick Rousso.   

YOU DON'T SAY

John, you know me too well.

A CLARE-FICATION: MAKE THAT FOUR NEWSPAPERS

As one of my former brethren in sports at the P-I pointed out; I’ve actually covered the Seahawks for four newspapers. It started at the Fournier Newspapers in Kent (1979-81), moved to the Journal-American in Bellevue (192-86) and finished with a 22-year run at the Seattle Post-Intelligencer (1987-2008). But when the P-I and Times went on strike in 2000, I finished the season as the Seahawks’ beat writer for the Union Record – the paper that was published three times a week by the striking employees of both papers.

UP NEXT: THE BIG R, AND ANOTHER 12

When I walk out of VMAC today, it will be the end of a 36-year journey that was capped by a six-season stint as the digital media writer at Seahawks.com. It was a strange transition to go from being a 30-year beat writer to working for the team. Now, it’s on to something else new – including being a fan of the team I covered since 1979.

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