~ Telford Rowe ~
    I was riding along through the Hamlet of Pittsfield on my Honda
550 one day, minding my own business and apparently, not paying
much attention because the next thing I knew I hear this ROAR! It's
my buddy Telford and he's RIGHT NEXT to me, on his 750 revving the
shit out of it... 'C'mon, let's go for a ride!" 'OK' I respond as I'm
shaking out my boot and attempting to regain my compusure... Down
to New Berlin then continue on Route 80 to Columbus - a nice
winding road that's just perfect for riding a motorcycle. We get
through the "S" curve by John Cross's house and next thing I know,
Tel is standing up on his pegs... then he's kneeling on the seat and
working his way upward.. I'm watching with wonderment... now he's
on his feet, standing on the seat and that's it for me - I back off. He's
not done though, his next trick is one foot and one hand, that's the
bear minimum and we're going right along I might add... So, then
and there I realize why my friend Mark Woodard calls him 'Wild Man
Tel' - he comes back down to his seat eventually and we pull over.
'You're crazy.' I inform him, "Aw, that's nothing," he's smiling that sly
Telford smile with a twinkle in his eye, "I used to have a BMW with a
locking throttle, with that one I could let go with both hands. One
day I did just that on Route 8, going past the golf course. There were
some guys playing and I waved to them, you know, showing off. Then
that throttle came unlocked and the next thing I know I'm staring at
the headlight. AHAHAH, went ass over teakettle. Did those guys
think that was funny!!"
   And that was Tel. Nicest guy in the world. Truly a good friend that
if you had a need, and he could be of help, he would be. A lot of
people say things like, 'the guy would give you the shirt off his back' -
with Telford, I believe that was true. And, he was always interesting.
He grew up on Farm mechanics and was proud of the fact that he
could make things work with junk. In fact he wore it like a badge.
Through the years that we rode motorcycles, 3 wheelers and 4
wheelers, he made do with what he had always, and if it might not
earn points for style, it sure worked pretty good. We would marvel at
the Telfordisms as he described how they worked - sometimes
shaking our heads, sometimes nodding - no matter to Tel, he rolled
with it in his good natured way.
   I remember watching him dancing and having fun at gigs with
Mark's band and thinking how cool he was, at ease with himself and
enjoying the moment. Telford was unique, there was no pretense
with him, no angle. He was your friend because he liked you and
that was that. A few years ago Tel retired and his partner Anne held a
party for him, by this time he had been diagnosed with the disease
supranuclear palsy, and it was taking it's toll. A shame, he was the
same inside but I could tell he struggled to get it out. Things didn't
always come easily for Telford in life, he worked hard for what he
had. It's been two years since that party and Mark called to let me
know that Tel had passed this past Monday, 10/17/2011. Damn, I'm
sorry to hear that and want to offer my condolences to Anne and his
family, but at the same time I'm sure that Telford is happier now than
he was being like that. Even when you know it's a blessing - it's still
tough to take, he was a good friend and I know we'll all miss him.
Mark, Myself, Tel, Mark K, Ron and Lynn at Tels retirement.