Checking in from Wolfforth, Texas …
On Wednesday and Thursday, June 13 and 14, I walked from Idalou on the eastside through Lubbock to Wolfforth on the westside. The trip took longer than usual due to the pleasant interruptions of people wishing me well on my journey. Having seen a piece about Heart Trek USA on television Tuesday evening, scores of people honked their horn, slowed down and rolled down the window to shout encouragement, made the heart sign with their hands or pulled over just to talk about my trip. Several handed me donations to the American Heart Association. Maybe it’s my reflective vest, but I’m particularly popular with roadside construction crews. These are my peeps—I really appreciate them. Check out our Facebook page for photos of some of these folks. It’s amazing what a little publicity can generate. And it is gratifying to see the response that people have when they learn the purpose of my walk. In addition to individual donations, we received a nice contribution from Vista Bank in Lubbock, TX. Thanks to all our new friends and supporters.
In Lubbock, I walked along the south edge of the campus of Texas Tech University, a large and impressive school with a nice uniform look with buildings made of the local yellow brick. There is definitely a lot of Red Raider pride in West Texas.
Lubbock was an intentional inclusion on this trip, as it was the hometown of one of my favorite stars from the past:
Charles Hardin Holley, aka Buddy Holly
Brenda and I visited the Buddy Holly Center and Buddy Holly Plaza at the corner of 19th Street and Buddy Holly Avenue. The center is a tribute to this favorite son of Lubbock whose career as a pioneer of rock and roll was tragically cut short by his death, along with Ritchie Valens and the Big Bopper, in a plane crash in Clear Lake, Iowa on February 3, 1959. Buddy was only 22 years of age, but had recorded 25 songs including 10 top ten songs over just eighteen months. He has been called “the most influential creative force in early rock and roll.” Buddy and his group, the Crickets, were the first American rock group to tour Britain and Australia. The Beatles, Rolling Stones, Dave Clark Five and other groups that later formed the British invasion all emulated Buddy’s musical styling. Paul McCartney studied Buddy’s fingering on his famed Fender Stratocaster guitar. The Beatles were named as a tribute to the Crickets. Elton John took to wearing oversized eyeglasses to follow Buddy’s trade mark black rimmed glasses. In my opinion and that of many others, if Buddy Holly had lived, he would be the greatest name in the history of rock and roll music. Oh, what we missed by his death. As Don McLean later penned in his song “American Pie”, it was “…the day the music died.”
Here is a short list of some of Buddy Holly and the Crickets hit songs:
That’ll be the Day Rave On! Maybe Baby True Love Ways
Peggy Sue Oh, Boy! Every Day Not Fade Away
Long live the memory of Buddy Holly!
The highlight of my walk on Thursday was an encounter with an aerial crop duster. Flying a trademark yellow and blue Air Tractor (manufactured locally in nearby Olney, Texas), I watched in awe as this pilot made passes under power lines and just over the top of houses and moving transfer trucks. The aerobatics were phenomenal. This guy could have bested the Red Baron in a dogfight. The only downside—I think I got crop dusted.
On Friday, I head to Brownfield, Texas on Hwy 62, then turn west toward Plains, Texas and Tatum, New Mexico on Hwy 380. Hope all will keep following this journey. Thanks for your interest and support.