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Every Exit Tells a Story, Don't It?
Every Exit Tells a Story, Don't It?
Published by Swampy Meadows
09-23-2022
Every Exit Tells a Story, Don't It?

BEVERLY HILLS (MI) – Given the optimistic outlook that surrounds the program, “From the Swamp” hopes to be hitting the highway fairly often this upcoming season to watch the Flyers perform in person. It’s a 222 mile jaunt (roughly 3 hours and 15 minutes) from my front door to the UD Arena parking lot.

Back in my UD undergrad days Rod Stewart had a hit single called “Every Picture Tells a Story, Don’t It?” Borrowing that theme and applying it to a road trip, my feeble brain came up with the concept for a column of “Every Exit Tells a Story, Don’t It?” Fear not, I won’t bore you with details on each individual exit, but there are some intriguing tales to be told along the way. Let’s hit the road!

Taking the all interstate highway route:

Exit 5, I-696

Oakland Community College’s Orchard Ridge campus where I used to play pickup basketball back in the ‘80s. I once took my equally hoop crazy boss at the time Tommy Turner there to lace ‘em up at lunchtime.

Exit 169, I-96

Seven Mile Road is where WorkForce Software’s HQ is located. I worked here for 10 years and when I started there were 80 employees; when I left there were over 600. It was fun to watch it grow and I would like to think I played a small part in their success.

Exit 170, I-96

Somewhere around here my Jeep got rear-ended by a semi on my way to Detroit Metro Airport. There is nothing quite like looking in the rearview mirror and seeing a big rig bearing down on you with its horn blaring. Filled out the police report; drove to the airport; backed my Jeep up against the wall so no one could mess with it and caught my flight to Dallas. I was the mayor of goofy street for the rest of the day. And no, I didn’t sue the idiot driver.

Exit 17, I-275

Romulus HS is the alma mater of former Flyer Devin Searcy and I got to see him play in person and interview him there once and again at the Michigan HS All-Star game. Believe it or not, Devin is still hoopin’ as he signed last year with SC Rasta Vecha in Germany. Nice guy and obviously a very durable player.

Not too much of real interest until you hit I-75 and cross the border into Ohio.

Exit 204, I-75

Toledo is the home of former Flyers Brian Roberts, Pat Murnen and legendary coach Don Donoher. I drove down to see the Flyers play UT back in the BG days, as described here:

http://www.udpride.com/forums/showthread.php?t=7555

Exit 201, I-75

Maumee is where the Younger Swampette once pitched four games in one day for her travel softball team in a tournament, won them all and her Oakland Sidewinders squad took home the hardware.

Exit 187, I-75

Sometimes the towns on the exit signs form an interesting name for a person. Luckey Haskins is one of them. Fostoria McComb and Napoleon Fremont further down the road are pretty good ones, as well.

Exit 181, I-75

The Swampettes attended a Nike Softball camp at BGSU one sweltering summer. It was the first time on a college campus for either of them and the dorms were not air conditioned. They survived.

Exit 157, I-75

Findlay is home to Marathon Oil and Cooper Tire, both of whom were clients of mine back in my ad sales days. One of my favorite Mexican restaurants is Oler’s, right across the street from Cooper Tire’s HQ.

Exit 135, I-75

The Upper Sandusky/Delphos exit is an ex-Flyer doubleheader, as the former is the hometown of Ed Young, maker of “The Shot” while the latter is where Jack Kill played at Delphos St. John HS.

Exit 127, I-75

Lima is the hometown of former Flyer Joe Fisher, a graduate of Lima Central Catholic. Joe had the largest pair of thighs known to man. He also went 6-6 on FG and 3-3 from the FT line against UCLA in 1974, so he’s got that going for him…which is nice.

Exit 110, I-75

Damon Goodwin hails from St. Mary’s, which is about 20 miles from St. Henry, the hometown of Ryan Mikesell and Kurt Huelsman.

Exit 99, I-75

The father and son who purchased my 1937 Hudson Terraplane in 1972 were from Anna. I bought it for $75 and sold it to them for $125, altho I had to put a new clutch in it, so I basically broke even. Wonder if that car is still on the road?

Exit 83, I-75

Fellow 300 Floor of University Hall resident Tom Grunkemeyer hailed from Piqua. We called him “Pic Way” like the shoe store chain. He preferred “Grunk.”

Exit 74, I-75

Troy was home to one of UD’s best ballplayers–Brooks Hall–as well as the captain of the UD “What If?” team–Alex Carmona. Turns out Carmona is still playing hoops in his native Puerto Rico:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alejandro_Carmona

Exit 51, I-75

Turn right onto Nicholas Road and that will take you out to what used to be University Hall, my freshman dorm. Turn left on Edwin C. Moses Blvd. and you have arrived at the basketball mecca known as The University of Dayton Arena.

See you soon.

That’s it “From the Swamp.”
You can email me at: swampy@udpride.com
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