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A black pastor’s controversial eulogy at Aretha Franklin’s funeral laid bare before the world what black women say they have experienced for generations: sexism and inequality in their houses of worship every Sunday.
NFL luminaries, fans and family gathered Saturday to remember Green Bay Packers great Ray Nitschke, whose violent tackles became a signature of the Vince Lombardi teams that won five NFL titles in the 1960s. Some 1,250 people packed the auditorium-like sanctuary of Bayside Christian Fellowship church for an emotional memorial service punctuated by occasional laughter and applause.
Two hall of fame sportscasters died just two days and a thousand miles apart last week. Fittingly, they were linked by more than a common craft. Dick Wright, who spent two decades as the "voice of Valley sports" while at KZUN Radio, was an inveterate St. Louis Cardinals fan. Harry Caray was the St. Louis sportscaster for 25 years beginning when Dick listened to Cardinal broadcasts while growing up in Anaconda, Mont.
In a funeral mass marked by more laughs than tears, the sports world said goodbye to Hall of Fame baseball broadcaster Harry Caray. He was remembered Friday as a people-loving master of the microphone who got generations of fans hooked on the game. "He led more fans to the ballpark than any other announcer in the history of baseball," declared Tribune Co. executive vice president Jim Dowdle. It was Dowdle who hired Caray 16 years ago to be the voice of the Chicago Cubs. "There's no one on the horizon who comes close to equaling the affection the fans had for him," sportscaster Brent Musberger said.
Just as surely as Harry Caray will not be able to pass the microphone and his broadcasting legacy over to grandson Chip in the booth at Wrigley Field, the younger Caray won't be able to duplicate his grandfather's public persona. No one could. By being who he was, and thereby becoming bigger than the team he covered, if not the entire sport, Harry Caray assured that he'd be one of a kind. More than that, he'd be the one whom baseball fans would most want to adopt.
She changed women's lives. Shirley Michaelsen wasn't just a teacher to thousands of women in the Spokane area. She was a role model and a source of strength. She helped them find jobs, listened to their troubles, lent them money for books, baby sitters - sometimes even rent. Michaelsen was one of two women who established almost all of the women's programs in Spokane.
One of the first times Shirley Michaelsen appeared in this newspaper was September 1965. In a society page article on fall fashion shows, she posed with her daughter Dianne and was referred to as "Mrs. Robert Michaelsen." Michaelsen, along with her best buddy and colleague, Betty Hammond, pioneered almost all the women's programs in place in Spokane today. Michaelsen died Sunday at age 79; Hammond died in April. Both of their hearts gave out, but not before they shared them with thousands of Inland Northwest women.
Clarence Buckenberger Sr., a driving force in recreation softball both locally and nationally for more than a quarter of a century, died Thursday night at his Spokane Valley home following a lengthy illness. He was 73. Buckenberger was born and raised in South Dakota. He moved to Spokane in 1948 and immediately got involved in the local sports scene, helping form the Valley Youth Baseball League, where he coached and served on the board for nine years. In the mid-1950s, with his kids well entrenched in sports, "Bucky" as he was affectionately known, rekindled his own athletic career.
With a military honor guard in a church filled with Hollywood and Washington dignitaries, friends paid a sometimes lighthearted tribute Friday to Sonny Bono, the singer, the actor and the congressman who was known for his wit. They came to St. Theresa's Catholic Church to remember the accomplishments of a man whose career spanned what some people called a most unforgiving group of professions.
1. Denny Ashlock, 1938-1997. File/The Spokesman-Review 2. Spokane County Commissioners Kate McCaslin and John Roskelley, listen to Denny Ashlock, left, before touring Mirabeau Point with Ashlock and Greg Bever, right, in July. Photo by Steve Thompson/The Spokesman-Review
It was his heart, the doctors said. Well, sure, it was his heart. Denny Ashlock had one of the biggest hearts in the county. His generous, tireless devotion to our community, and to causes well beyond it, could only come from a great and loving heart indeed.
Juanita Clark, the older sister of former Detroit Mayor Coleman Young, cries before the start of his funeral services. Photo by Associated Press
1. Carl "Tuffy" Ellingsen was a triple-threat back for WSU's last Rose Bowl team. The Spokesman-Review 2. Ellingsen
Stan Sweeting in his Santa workshop in 1985. File/The Spokesman-Review
Jane and Jene Moe. Family photo
Among the death notices that did not rise to front-page news during last week's international grieving was the obituary noting the passing of Viktor Frankl at age 93. It is worth pondering whether Frankl's death would have had a higher news value had there been less funereal competition. After all, there are two ways to look at his life and work.
My wife is mourning Diana. I am mourning Richie Ashburn. I am thinking of writing a book about the difference between women and men. The tentative title is, "Women Are From London; Men Are From Philadelphia." Don't get me wrong. I feel terrible about the senseless death of a vibrant young mother, I respect her altruistic impulses, and I'm sorry she died on the run from her dysfunctional in-laws and the hellhounds from the tabloids, but I feel no psychic connection to Diana because, generally speaking, guys do not grow up relating to princesses.