June 24, 2013

Points East: A glorious day for Team TKO

LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. — If we could have placed a custom order for weather on Saturday, June 1, it could not possibly have been more perfect for walking and plain-old, laid-back, enjoyment than what the Good Lord provided.

Oh, I’m sure that a lot of people, yours truly included, had spent some time in prayer that the weather would at least be tolerable, for our Step Out Walk to Stop Diabetes, scheduled to take place in the early hours among the woods and trails surrounding Keeneland Race Track.  But I doubt that anyone expected what we got.  In fact, when I went to bed on Friday night, the forecasters were saying “40 percent chance of thunderstorms before noon on Saturday.”

Loretta and I stashed rain gear in the back seat and headed out of Paint Lick just after daybreak.  We didn’t even bother taking the big cameras and that proved to be a huge mistake because the valleys along the way were full of fog and the photo light was perfect.  

When we arrived at the parking lot around 7:30, the only clouds in sight were puffy and snow white as though the sky had been specially decorated with truck loads of giant hydrangeas.   A gentle breeze was stirring and the sunlight was diffused just enough that nothing was glaring and the temperature was around 70.  In other words, picture perfect.  And at least Loretta and our daughter, Jennifer, had brought along their little cameras and they sure were put to use.

The dozen or so members of Team TKO signed in and joined about 700 other walkers, either directly or indirectly, afflicted by this terrible disease and determined to do whatever we can to stop it.  Grandson, Tyler Kane Ochs, for whom our team is named, was feeling puny so he did his mile atop his father Kevin’s shoulders while the rest of us kept asking him, “How’s the weather up there, Champ?”  

I am oh so proud of and grateful to my readers for sponsoring Tyler and me in this annual fundraiser.  

At this writing, 50 of you have contributed just over $1,500 to our cause which is half of Team TKO’s total effort that will amount to more than $3,000 when the final tally is complete.  Donations are still coming in because the drive is not officially over until July 1.  The Keeneland Step Out Walk will top out at more than $275,000, making it one of the most successful fund raisers in the nation for the American Diabetes Association.  

If you want more information, simply go to the website:    and follow your nose.  Our specific event is listed as “Lexington, Ky., June 1, 2013.”

Our event is blessed with numerous corporate sponsors and I can’t begin to list them all in this column but a few deserve special notice.  Starbucks must have served up a few hundred gallons of coffee throughout the day.  Kroger gave out at least a ton of fresh fruit and there was an abundance of free soft drinks, fruit and vegetable juices and healthy snacks available everywhere we turned.  Walmart stores collected thousands of dollars from customers and employees.

But I believe the biggest reason for our success is my favorite television newsperson, Ms. Amber Philpott who co-anchors the local evening news for Lexington CBS affiliate, WKYT, Channel 27!  Not only does this wonderful woman tirelessly promote our Step Out Walk but she is on the scene from start to finish.

Amber was already rubbing elbows with the crowd when we arrived at 7:30.  She was still encouraging walkers and diabetics when we left shortly after noon.  And, of course, she walked with her own “Red Team,” whose members are all diabetic.  Loretta even got a photo of me hugged up with Amber that I intend to frame.  

Amber Philpott is an award winning journalist but she is also a down to earth, genuine human being who goes way beyond the call of duty to stand up for causes she believes in.  I feel like I’m with family when I watch her on the evening news.


Text Only
  • denis.jpg Direct Kick: Did Lana cross the line with her remark?

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • mitch.jpg On The Rebound: All Star Game less important than Wiffle Ball

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • denis.jpg Direct Kick: A very eventful week in sports

    July 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • The shining kingdom

    The drop in gas prices locally is a welcome sight for most residents in the area with gas falling under $3.60 per gallon.

    July 16, 2014

  • Letter to the editor: Thanks, Sentinel-Echo

    In the July 4 edition of the Sentinel-Echo, (last page, section 1), the entire page was given to quotes of references to God, the Declaration of Independence, and our constitution by our founding fathers, former presidents, Supreme Court judges, etc. 

    July 14, 2014

  • Zamperini's story was inspiring

    I had never heard the names of Louis Zamperini and Russel Allen Phillips until my pastor gave me a book, “Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption,” by author Laura Hillenbrand, who wrote, “Seabiscuit: An American Legend” a few years ago.

    July 11, 2014

  • The tales of Dr. Robert E. Pennington

    When Dr. H. V. Pennington began to practice medicine in Laurel County times were hard and medical methods were primitive, compared to today. 

    July 11, 2014

  • Where did that red truck go?

     We were sitting out on the front porch last Saturday afternoon when a  big, red, late- model pick up whizzed by on Charlie Brown.  It looked like there was a man driving and a woman riding shotgun  

    July 7, 2014

  • A change for Pace

    Let me tell you a little about my friend Candice Pace. We were sitting in the fountain square the other day and she was telling me about how she had driven to Pikeville, where she’s from, to visit with her mom. Along the way, deep in McCreary County, she passed three turtles that were crossing the road.Let me tell you a little about my friend Candice Pace. We were sitting in the fountain square the other day and she was telling me about how she had driven to Pikeville, where she’s from, to visit with her mom. Along the way, deep in McCreary County, she passed three turtles that were crossing the road.

    July 7, 2014

  • mitch.jpg On The Rebound: A little effort can make a big difference

    July 5, 2014 1 Photo

AP Video
Arizona Prison Chief: Execution Wasn't Botched Calif. Police Investigate Peacock Shooting Death Raw: Protesters, Soldiers Clash in West Bank Police: Doctor Who Shot Gunman 'Saved Lives' 'Modern Family' Star on Gay Athletes Coming Out MN Twins Debut Beer Vending Machine DA: Pa. Doctor Fired Back at Hospital Gunman Raw: Iowa Police Dash Cam Shows Wild Chase Obama Seeks Limits on US Company Mergers Abroad Large Family to Share NJ Lottery Winnings U.S. Flights to Israel Resume After Ban Lifted Official: Air Algerie Flight 'probably Crashed' TSA Administrator on Politics and Flight Bans Raw: National Guard Helps Battle WA Wildfires Raw: Ukraine's Donetsk Residents Flee Senators Push to End Hamas Threat in Cease-Fire A Young Victim's Premonition, Hug Before MH17 Raw: Deadly Storm Hits Virginia Campground Death Penalty Expert: 'This is a Turning Point' Raw: MH17 Victim's Bodies Arrive in Netherlands
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide

Now that school is out, what are your family’s summer vacation plans?

A. No major plans. We will probably hang out around Laurel County.
B. Going to the beach!
C. Kentucky has a lot of wonderful state parks, and we plan to visit a few and enjoy quality family time.
     View Results