On Slogans and Old Friends

By: Roger Sheppard
By: Roger Sheppard

While WV selects a new/old slogan, the Valley loses some dear friends

Good evening.

Two totally different topics this evening.

One, the new slogan for the state of West Virginia , which just happens to be the old slogan – Wild and Wonderful.

Whether or not West Virginia is truly “Open for Business” is open to debate.

But the fact that we’re open to wasting money on making one set of signs and now we’ll waste money putting up NEW signs with the OLD slogan, is now an established fact. I’d like to hope that the OLD signs with the NEW slogan could be put back up but I doubt it.

What an incredible waste of money.

On a more serious note, some farewells to old friends.

The Mid-Ohio Valley lost three gems in the past week.

Florence Ruble, who along with husband and family, started Rubles Sternwheelers and helped to make Blennerhasssett Island accessible to tens of thousands of people over the past 30 years, died recently. What a wonderful woman and a good friend.

Don Hale, a former police officer who always reminded me of Clint Eastwood’s tough-guy character, also passed away. Don and I used to do ringside announcing for amateur boxing at the old V-F-W in downtown Parkersburg . Thankfully, he knew a lot about boxing and was willing to share it with me. What a great guy.

And Jack Keener, Mister Bowling in the Mid-Ohio Valley , and long-time proprietor of Emerson Bowling Lanes, who also passed away. My good friend, Dave Poe, wrote a wonderful tribute to him recently in the newspaper. I can’t top that but will only add an “amen.”

And finally, a departure of a somewhat happier note. Not for us. But for her.

WTAP Daybreak anchor and Noon producer-anchor Kristen Kirby’s last day with us was on Oct. 31. She’s headed to a TV station in Spokane, Washington . We know she’ll go far, and not just in terms of distance. We wish her all the best.


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