Sports Memories

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Sports Memories

Post by Dillon » Thu Jul 11, 2019 3:15 pm

Since it is the offseason I thought I would start a topic on Sports Memories - I have a couple I would like to share. On a previous thread about Bob Patrino I mentioned that my brother in law played on the 1964 Harlowton Engineers State class B championship basketball team that Bob Patrino coached. As my brother in-law Butch Richter, was slowly dying of cancer he received this email from one of his Harlowton teammates & yes I got permission from my sister to post this today. Butch had very little growing up except friends & basketball. He went on to play college basketball at Western twice & got his degree before a long career in the Army. Here is the email from his teammate.

Hello Arlene & Butch
I'm so sad to hear of your illness. Life can seem very unfair at times and this is one of those times. I want you both to know that you and your family are in my prayers. Heaven is going to be a wonderful and joyous place where you will be able to break many more back boards with thunderous dunks! I will never forget that night in practice when you brought down the back board with a dunk...remember?? We all thought we would be running lines until we couldn't get up anymore. Butch I know that you are a wonderful husband, father, friend. I hope I can be your teammate and friend again when we meet in heaven. I promise to pass the ball more!! It seams such a short time ago that we had no worries in the world and suddenly, we've all reached that period in life where we are vulnerable to mortality. I know that you had nothing given to you in this life and look what you have accomplished and shared with the rest of us. You graduated from college, your service & rise in the military has always amazed me and made me proud to know you. You served your country honorably not only in peace time but in war as well and survived. You married your beautiful high school sweetheart and successfully raised a family that I know is extremely proud of you.

Butch...I know that Heaven's doors will be open for you. When I get there I want you to have a jersey for me. I want to be on your team!! God Bless You!!

Your teammate and friend.

Jon Erbe

My brother in-law passed away on the 10th anniversary of 9/11 & Jon Erbe not long ago. I spent my grade school years in Harlo & many years later happened to be coached in the 1972 East West Shrine game by yes Bob Patrino. Small world.

So does anyone else out there have some sports memories they would like to share?

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Re: Sports Memories

Post by 70Griz » Thu Jul 11, 2019 3:32 pm

Dillon, I'm not surprised by the thoughtful letter your brother in law received from Jon Erbe. I knew Jon for many years when he lived in Billings and had a successful insurance career. Several Class B friends told me he was an outstanding athlete in high school at Harlowton and he passed way too soon.

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