The Times West Virginian

Bob Herzel

November 11, 2009

HERTZEL COLUMN: Many veterans were athletes

MORGANTOWN — It was, they all thought, a day like any other, a day to be thankful because, while they were in the military, they were stationed back home in Fort Hood and not fighting the sand and al-Qaida in Iraq or trudging through the barren mountains of Afghanistan chasing down Taliban.

Terrorism was lost in the back of their minds. They were mostly young and mostly innocent, kids serving their country as they checked into adulthood, their futures not yet mapped out for them, meaning they were clutching to the dreams of youth.

That was when a madman came into their lives, guns blazing, bullets ricocheting off walls, tearing through flesh and bone, stealing their futures and ending their dreams in a meaningless act of insanity.

They died or were wounded not on the battlefield, but in the shadow of freedom.

Oh, how our world has changed since the last great war in which we participated. True, it always was our youth who we marched off to war, kids just out of high school, college kids with girlfriends, not wives, kids who were supposed to be learning history, not making it.

Athletes were always among the heroes, both present college athletes and those who had played out their college days and began down life’s path.

Dr. John Doyle was among the latter group.

He’d had an athletic career at West Virginia University that was almost unmatched, starring in football, baseball, basketball and track from 1929 to 1932. It was enough to enshrine him in the WVU Athletic Hall of Fame.

He left the school to attend the Medical College of Virginia and earned his M.D. at the Chicago Medical School in 1940.

Dec. 7, 1941, of course, was the day that has lived in infamy, drawing America into World War II and Dr. John Doyle with it.

Text Only
Bob Herzel
  • Holgorsen’s program hits turning point

    You can almost sense, as you watch West Virginia University football coach Dana Holgorsen sit before the gathered Big 12 media contingent answering questions in the Omni Hotel in Arlington, Texas, that he senses his program has reached a turning point.

    July 23, 2014

  • Big 12 Media Days Foo_time(1).jpg Trickett’s play key factor for Mountaineers’ success

     In the end, it comes down to the quarterback.
    Always has with Dana Holgorsen, always will.
    Quarterback is the offense with the West Virginia University coach. When he does well, the team wins – almost always.
    When he does poorly, the team doesn’t stand much of a chance.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Saban, family happy at Alabama

    Alabama football coach Nick Saban, whose team opens the season against West Virginia in Atlanta on Aug. 30, denied receiving or turning down this offseason an offer of $100 million to coach Texas, indicating he planned to finish his career as coach of the Crimson Tide.

    July 18, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: ‘Quarterback child prodigy’ comes to WVU amidst very high expectations

    Has West Virginia football coach Dana Holgorsen finally put the arrow he needs in his quiver with the commitment received Wednesday from high school quarterback David Sills, who is a rather extraordinary story and may also just be a rather extraordinary quarterback?

    July 18, 2014

  • WVU kicker Molinari ‘All-American boy’

    West Virginia kicker Mike Molinari may not be an All-American but he is an All-American boy.
    He was honored for that on Wednesday when the Allstate Insurance Company and the American Football Coaches Association announced the West Virginia redshirt senior kicker/punter Michael Molinari is a nominee for the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team.

    July 16, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: Smallwood puts future in jeopardy

    The last thing West Virginia’s struggling football program needed as twilight was setting on Bastille Day in Morgantown was to have one of its own whisked off to the North Central Regional Jail on a fugitive warrant from another state, especially a player who had figured to play a key role in the resurrection of a program gone bad.

    July 16, 2014

  • WVU player arrested in Delaware case

    West Virginia University running back Wendell Smallwood has been arrested by university police and is being held at North Central Regional Jail awaiting extradition on a felony warrant out of Delaware.

    July 15, 2014

  • WVU hoping to add two non-conference contests

    West Virginia is nearing the completion of deals to play football games against long-time rival Virginia Tech, now in the Atlantic Coast Conference, and Tennessee of the Southeastern Conference, according to a source close to the negotiations.
    An announcement is expected shortly.

    July 15, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: MLB All-Star game biggest celebration of top athletes

    You will pardon me if I find something else to do when the Pro Bowl rolls around, or if I try to find a “Three Stooges” marathon when it’s time for the NHL All-Star game. As for the NBA All-Star game, I’d rather watch a replay of a four-year-old Uruguay-Ethiopia World Cup soccer match in which I knew the outcome.

    July 14, 2014

  • Howes learns to ‘never settle’ as WVU administrator

    You probably don’t know much about Terri Howes, even though she is a rather high-ranking executive in the West Virginia University athletic department.
    “I like it that way,” she said, sitting in a large office at the Coliseum, decorated with pictures and memorabilia, a jar of candy sitting by the door for visitors to dip into.

    July 13, 2014

House Ads
Featured Ads