My Own Memorable Moments (Don Ward)

By: Don Ward
By: Don Ward

'Tis the time for the year-in review stories. Here are 11 things I will remember about '09.


We've all seen the "best of" and "worst of" lists as the year comes to an, movies, sports stories, news stories.  This isn't one of those. 

We all have things about the past year that we'll remember...personal things.  I started this blog this year, as a way of helping 11 News viewers get to know more about me, if they want to, beyond what you see on TV.   This list should certainly help do that!  It still feels a little bit awkward to me, writing in the first person, but here goes. 

Because we're 11 news, here are 11 of my memorable moments from no particular order.

1) I Climbed Pikes Peak - I try to do it every year now,  This year it was a great climb with good friends.  Hopefully next year we'll beat the 7 hours even it took this time.  Here are the blog entries I wrote right before and then right after the hike.  Second from right below is 11 News Chief Meteorologist Brian Bledsoe.

2) I Went To My Own Mother's Wedding - Mom married a wonderful guy named Leo.  They got married at St. Patrick's church, which is also where they met. Leo lost his wife a few years ago, my parents have been divorced for a long time.   I'm pretty sure this won't happened again next year.   On the left, Mom (Ruth) and Leo in the middle all their kids and various spouses.  Right picture, Mom and Leo with their grand kids.



3) I Spent Two Weeks In England With My Father - Dad hadn't been back in 30 years to see the people and places we knew when we lived in England in the 1970's.  I'd promised him this trip for years, and I finally found the time to make it happen.  It was fun.  I'm going back again in March.  Here's my Dad sky high in the London Eye overlooking the River Thames and the Houses of Parliament.  The other picture is the part of the grounds and the back of the Manor House in the village of Thorpe Mandeville, where we used to live (we lived in that village, but not in THIS house!) The man who still lives in the Manor was our landlord all those years ago.   We were able to spend an afternoon there visiting with him and his wife.


We stayed with great friends from way back, Peter and Sandra Wilkins.


4) I Threw Out The First Pitch At A Sky Sox Game - It didn't go well.  I wrote a blog about how I could have done better as a child!

5) I Lost 14 Pounds - All the training and prep work for Pikes Peak paid off.  I'd like to lose another 10 in 2010.

6) I Bench Pressed 225 For The First Time - No big deal for big time lifters, but pretty good for me.  Maybe I'll get to 250 in 2010.

7) I Went To Three Funerals - This is memorable but certainly not in a good way.  At least if they were going to happen I'm glad I was able to go.  There was one more in England I wanted to attend but couldn't.

8) A Rock Star Read My Blog - Legendary guitarist Brian May of Queen liked the blog I wrote about a song he wrote so much that he put it on his website,   Here's the original piece.  Nothing like that is too likely to happen again in '10...or ever!

9) I Saw Jesus Christ Superstar Once - I timed a trip to Madison, Wisconsin to see my father with a stop by the JCSS tour in that town.  The tour stars Ted Neeley (from the 1973 movie) in the title role.  I've been a fan of his for decades, and have actually gotten to know him over the years.  Dad and I had breakfast with Ted the day after the show.  I've got tickets to see the show at least three times in 2010.  Here's a picture from when Ted Neely and co-star James Delisco appeared on 11 News at 4pm in November of '08.

10) I Spent As Much Time As Possible With My Nieces And Nephews - John, Julie, Evan, Ryan and Kate are awesome kids.  I can do better next year by spending more time with them all.

11) I Made 24 Public Appearances Representing 11 News - I'm proud of these memorable moments.  I was the Emcee for many charities at breakfast, lunch and dinner events.  Usually my 11 News Co-Anchor Shannon Brinias was there too.  I did have a few without her and she had a few without me.  Chief Meteorologist Brian Bledsoe does many of them as well.  Our morning anchors, Stacia Naquin and John Harding made a lot of appearances too, as did weekend anchors David Nancarrow and McKenzie Martin.  Other on-air staffers put in their time too.  Most of these happen outside our normal work hours so they do take a lot of our personal time.  We all agree it's a great way to use some of our time because it helps our community.  I'm pretty sure I'll surpass that 24 in 2010!  Below are a few pictures from a few events.



                                                                                                                         Above, riding a mechanical bull at a Newborn Hope event.

This last one is me with Olympic legend Mark Spitz.  This was the night before the Peak Vista Breakfast of Champions event at which Shannon and I were the Emcees and he was the keynote THAT was memorable!    

Please leave a comment with some of your memorable moments.

I realize I'm pretty lucky..with a few exceptions I had a pretty good year, even at a time when things are pretty difficult in our nation.  I hope all of you had a good one too.  We can all hope for a better one personally and for our nation in 2010. 

I'm also lucky to work with great people at a great TV station in the city where I grew up!  Thanks for reading this blog and giving it enough of a response that it's worth the time to keep writing....even if it is a little awkward.

 We'll talk again soon.





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