MY BRUSHES WITH GREATNESS

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Allen Ertel: (Allen Who?) Allen Ertel was our Congressman in the United States House of Representatives when we lived in a small town north of Harrisburg, PA. I have corresponded with him several times in my capacity of Dean of Students at a small school in Pennsylvania. One day, when I was walking down the street in a small town of Pennsylvania, I walked right by Allen Ertel. A few years later Mr. Ertel was a candidate for Governor of Pennsylvania.

Tammy Faye Bakker: Tammy and her husband were on the PTL Network. A group of students and my wife and I were at the Jesus Festival (in the late 1970s). One afternoon we were talking - waiting for the concerts that would start later. Suddenly Tammy Faye Bakker walked by. She had heavy makeup - something she was known for. Someone in our group gasped. She turned and looked at us, and then she continue to where she was going.

Jon Fox: Jon Fox is a local politician in Montgomery County (outside of Philadelphia). Brenda and I had just moved from Sunbury, PA to Rockledge, PA. Jon Fox came to our apartment in Rockledge to register us to vote.

Terry Brooks: I met Terry Brooks, author of fantasy novels, at a book-signing in Philadelphia.

Scott Adams: I met Scott Adams, author of Dilbert books and comics, at a book-signing at Gene's Books in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania.

Carl Hiaasen: I met Carl Hiaasen, author many books, at a book-signing at a Philadelphia library.

Chris Welp: "Who is Chris Welp?" you say. He was the 7 ft. center for the 76ers in the late 1980s. I walked by him in the Philadelphia Airport. I had been watching the 76ers play the night before (they were on a road trip), and he was injured. The team flew him back to Philadelphia to get his injury looked at. Chris was traded to Seattle the next year. I don't know what happened to him after that. I don't think he was in basketball too much longer.

Marlo Thomas: I stood next to Marlo Thomas in a store on Nantucket Island (Massachusetts). My wife and I had taken a week-long trip to Cape Cod and Nantucket. We were walking down all the streets of the island and going through the stores of Nantucket. When we were in one store I was intent on looking at all the items -- some of which I had never seen in any other store at the time. I thought my wife was next to me. I pointed at an item and said, "Hey, look at that!" A voice came out of the woman next to me, "Yeh, look at this." Right away I recognized it as Marlo Thomas. I looked at her, and she looked at me. I make it a practice of not bothering people unless they are involved in an official public appearance, so I just kept looking at things in the store.

Patrick Gorman: Patrick Gorman is the actor who played General Hood in the 1993 mini-series "Gettysburg". I met Mr. Gorman at the 2001 Gettysburg Reenactment. He appeared with Patrick Falci at the tent, and they announced that "Gods and Generals" was in production.

Patrick Falci: Patrick Falci appeared as General A.P. Hill in the 1993 mini-series "Gettysburg". From what I remember of what he said, he was a consultant for the making of the film, since he was somewhat of an expert on some of the Confederate generals. He ended up playing A.P. Hill in the film. I met him and Patrick Gorman at the 2001 Gettysburg Reenactment.

David Morse: I had just bought my ticket to see "Fellowship of the Ring" and was in line to get popcorn when my sister came up and said that there was someone famous in the lobby about to go into one of the movies. I turned and saw that it was David Morse. David Morse, if you don't know, was in the TV series "St. Elsewhere". He has been in the following movies: "Max Dugan Returns", "Twelve Monkeys", "The Long Kiss Goodnight", "The Rock", "Contact", "The Negotiator", "Crazy in Alabama", "Green Mile", "Hearts in Atlantis".

Fred Sherman: "Who is Fred Sherman?" you say. If you lived in the Philadelphia area you would know that name. He does financial reporting on our local radio news station, and he has a talk show on the local talk radio station. He walked into the lobby of a movie multiplex. He said something, and I said to my wife, "Boy, that sounds like Fred Sherman!" His fiancee was in line ahead of us and confirmed that it was indeed Fred Sherman. She introduced us, and we shook hands.

Orien Reed: Orien Reed was a reporter on consumer affairs for the local NBC affiliate in Philadelphia. I saw her at the 2005 Philadelphia Flower Show, and we exchanged hellos.

Richard Hatch, May 10, 2012: My wife and I were touring some of the mansions in Newport, RI. We were walking from one of the mansions to get to our car and had to cross the street. I heard a man saying things I couldn't quite put together, so I looked at him. It was Richard Hatch. Richard won the first season of the American show, "Survivor". He later went to prison for a little while for tax evasion. He was walking on the other side of the street with a middle-aged woman I didn't recognize. Richard was saying, "So I told them, 'Just tell me what you want, and I'll write a check.' But the IRS has never sent me a bill." If we hadn't crossed the street, we would have been looking him right in the face.

John Cheney: My wife met John Cheney, coach of Temple University's basketball team, at her office.

 


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