A couple weeks ago I received a text message from the referee on our crew, his message stated that he would be retiring and that he enjoyed the many memories.
It finally sank in a couple days ago that he would no longer be traveling with us and I was reminiscing the last 10 years. Friday nights during football season were referred to as “Timday”. These days usually included some of the best times of my officiating career.
One event included a night when we traveled to Poteau. On that night I could see that Timmy was acting a bit different, almost as if he was a tad bit nervous. The reason this was on my mind this night is because he had to wear a microphone and announce the penalties. When we had a stoppage in the game I got Timmy’s attention. When he approached me I said, “you know what Timmy? Since your voice is on the PA System I noticed something about you that I never noticed before, you have a pretty voice.” Timmy immediately started laughing and he was back to his old self.
We had a game one year that just so happened to fall on my birthday. Timmy walked up to me and just kissed me on the cheek. I stepped back, with no telling what kind of expression, and just looked at him. He smiled and said that he talked to my mom earlier that day and she said to give me a birthday kiss for her. I wasn’t surprised at all that my mother had said that, but what was shocking was that Timmy went through with it! Later we were getting ready to take the field and Timmy said something that I could not hear. I stepped closer to him and said “what?”. He then repeated it and I still could not hear him. So this time I walked closer to him and leaned forward turning my head to put my ear closer to him. I then said “what did you say?”. Timmy then leaned in and kissed me on the cheek again. I’m still not sure if the second kiss was from mom or if it was just from Timmy, but from that day forward I always kept my eye on Timmy.
We not only had our fun with Timmy, but we learned a lot from him as well. I’ll never forget the tutelage or the experiences that I had. I will always be grateful for the opportunity that Timmy gave me to be a part of a great crew. Now we have a difficult time ahead of us to not only replace an official, but to move on without him. I wish Timmy the best of luck in his new journey and would simply like to say “Thank You”.