It’s probable that
anyone who lives in the Houston metropolitan
area has tuned their radio, at one time or another, to 92.1 FM. In its lifetime
it has been known as KZRQ, a Zoo format, KYND, a Beautiful Music format, and then
KLEF and KRTS, for a classical music format.
Radio One, a publically traded
company that owns many stations throughout the US, bought the Seabrook-Houston
licensed station to program a gospel format aimed primarily at the black audience.
However, several years back, it was redesigned as an all-news station.
For its new format, it hired several of Houston’s
best known broadcast news personalities, Brent Clanton, Lana Hughes and J.P. Prichart.
All three are my friends, but I know Brent the best.
told me a story that I thought would be an interesting column for TexasEscapes.com.
- Bill Cherry
with a President
How often do you get to rub shoulders with the former
leader of the Free World, literally in his own back yard? In the summer of 2004
I rode my last trip with the Houston Police Bicycle Relay Team from Houston to
Quebec City, Quebec, CA.
Our 2,970-mile route took us through Vicksburg,
New York City and Kennebunkport, MA, for the second time, where we had the rare
and unique privilege of meeting former President George H. W. Bush and Barbara
Bush at the family compound.
rode into Kennebunkport in two columns, followed by our support vans and patrol
cars. I will always remember Mr. Bush’s voice as he welcomed us inside the gates
of the compound, from atop a Segway PT: “Come on in here, all you Houston,
The Bush Summer Home is neat and tidy in a classic New England
fashion; with cedar shake siding, accented by white-trimmed windows and eaves,
overlooking the Atlantic Ocean.
Even though it was the middle of summer,
on an overcast day, there was a distinct coolness in the air.
our bikes through the front gate of the compound, and dismounted, clustering around
the former president, first lady and their dog, Milly.
Gifts were distributed:
A bouquet of flowers for Mrs. Bush, and Texas memorabilia for President Bush,
including embroidered jackets and dog tags of cancer patients for whom the Team
The HPD Relay makes an annual trek across the country to raise
funds and awareness for the mission of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. The Bush’s
daughter, Robin, died from childhood Leukemia at the age of 4 nearly 60-years
The Bush’s have been ardent supporters of the cause for finding a
cure for the disease.
President Bush was particularly intrigued by a new
kind of bicycle several of us were riding, called recumbents—where the rider sits
in a semi-prone position, with legs outstretched to reach the pedals.
quickly retrieved my bike, a “Rocket” short-frame recumbent, and invited President
Bush to try it. He was too tall for the short-framed bike, but gamely sat astride
it as I explained the mechanics of the bicycle.
He decided to try my bike,
so we angled his long legs upwards and outwards so that his feet were on the pedals,
aimed him towards a long stretch of driveway, and gave him a presidential push
forward. We didn’t let go.
We found that President Bush definitely had
the knack, but was too big for my bike. We later put him on a “long-boy” recumbent,
which was better suited for him.
Afterwards, the entire team strolled
with President and Mrs. Bush down to a rock wall on the water, and posed for photos,
including a group shot of our entire entourage with the former first family.
- President George H. W. Bush and Barbara Bush|
- Brent Clanton
courtesy Tom Bradshaw, Dr. Ed Charlesworth, Rita Dello Stritto, Sr. Officer Pete
Hernandez, Sr. Officer Roy McDonald, Sgt. Steve Morrison.
| Through the entire
afternoon, the Bushs were animated, gracious and hospitable; signing autographs
and making sure everyone had a chance to be photographed with them.|
team rode on that afternoon into a cold summer rainstorm, but the warmth of our
visit with the Bushs, and their support for our common cause, was additional motivation
for us to continue on.
A few days later we reached our destination in Quebec,
and fulfilled our mission for the Leukemia-Lymphoma Society for 2004.
2013 – William
Cherry's Galveston Memories"
October 29, 2013 column
| Texas Town List | Columns
a Dallas Realtor and free lance writer was a longtime columnist for "The Galveston
County Daily News." His book, Bill Cherry's Galveston Memories, has sold
thousands, and is still available at Barnes and Noble and Amazon.com and other
Cherry's Galveston Memories|