When I was 7 yrs old in 1965 my family was living in Germany. One day in the park, I caught a wild pigeon. We lived on the 3rd floor of an apartment building. Needless to say my parents would not let me keep it; but dad promised when we got back to the states and got settled he would build me a coop.
When I was 8 we moved back to the states to Pennsylvania. Soon I had my first loft and we went to a farmer and got permission to catch the wild birds which hung out in his barn!
While reading the Sunday paper my dad found the show results from the local pigeon show with a contact number and the rest is history. I have had birds ever since.
The show birds were nice but I was always looking for more. I was soon introduced to rollers, and watching them fly was more invigorating than I could have ever imagined.
I started racing as a kid in 1972 with the Kankakee RPC in Illinois, I WAS HOOKED!. I was mentored by a super fella named John Hayes from Braidwood Illinois. I am probably the only one who remembers him. He was the man to beat on the south-side of Chicago and the Fox Valley Combine back in the day. That year, my rookie year following Johns instructions I won more races and diplomas in the club than he did. (with my dads help of course as I was only 14).
I was only able to fly one young bird and one old bird season as my dad was transferred again and we moved out where there were no pigeon fanciers let alone racing enthusiasts, so I took up rollers again.
When I got married and settled down I became the Secretary/Treasurer of the NBRC right before it fell apart and had to be reorganized. 1980 I moved to Houston Texas. I won the first ever kit competition held in Houston in 1981. 1985 found me longing and searching for the racing homers again.
Since returning to local racing I have won more than my share of club, combine, and concourse races. The guys here know if they falter at all I will be right there to take the honors.