More on Tom Berry from Mark McKinney

Posted by Andy Durham on September 1, 2009 at 11:14 am under Professional | Read the First Comment

This piece is by Mark McKinney from today’s High Point Enterprise on-line version, and it is so inspiring we felt like we should share it with you and encourage you to read the entire article with link at the bottom for the end/conclusion.

Very good and inspiring/strong material…..

23 years with Tom Berry won’t be forgotten

Mark McKinney, High Point Enterprise Sports Editor

Tom Berry cast a long and impressive shadow during his time with The High Point Enterprise sports department.

In fact, not even a cast on a broken arm could keep Tom from getting the job done.

Let me explain.

As he always did, Tom was scheduled to anchor our ACC Tournament coverage. I know the city was Charlotte and I think the year was 1994, but that’s not important.

Tom suffered a broken left arm just prior to that tournament and I wondered if he would be able to cover the hoops action.

Two fully functioning hands are crucial in this line of work. Plus, Tom needed to drive as I was taking high-powered medicine to combat a throat infection that forced me to leave the driving to Tom.

No problem. Tom simply rolled down the window, rested his cast on it and motored down the highway.

Once at the Charlotte Coliseum, Tom wrote his normal six or seven stories each day and never missed a beat. He improvised a way to type, cast and all, and did us proud.

Tom’s efforts prompted legendary Clemson sports information director Bob Bradley to utter something that stayed with me to this day.

“You know, Mark,” Bradley said with a smile. “Tom Berry does a better job with one hand than most folks do with two.”

Dependable. Dedicated. Creative. The ultimate professional.

That was Tom Berry.

Tom died Sunday. So many years after Tom wowed me with his ability to overcome a broken left arm, and one year after he survived a bout with cancer that cost him a lung, the Enterprise sports department has lost its right arm.

From Super Bowls and Final Fours to local golf tournaments and community swim meets, Tom covered it all with unmatched skill and eloquence for 23 years.

As our sports columnist for the past 14 years, Tom called it like he saw it. He wasn’t afraid to take a stand, but never forgot the importance of writing with compassion and carefully chosen words.

Tom juggled so many beats so well. High Point University, Carolina Panthers, ACC, golf, high school sports, swimming – you name it, he wrote about it.

But as much as I marvelled at the way Tom did his job, I was far more awed by the way he lived his life during our 20-year friendship.

Tom was a faithful Christian, a proud and devoted husband and father. In the thousands of shifts we worked together, Tom rarely failed to talk in glowing terms about something his wife Sandy or daughters Ashlyn, Rachel and Leah had said or done or planned to do.

His priorities were clearly in order.

Tom was also a great friend. In my younger days, temper often got the best of me.

For the rest of the story please GO HERE.

from today’s News and Record at www.news-record.com under obituaries:

GREENSBORO — Mr. D. Thomas “Tom” Berry Jr., 48, died Sunday, August 30, 2009, at Duke University Medical Center, Durham.

A celebration of his life will be held at 2 p.m. on Wednesday, September 2, at Lawndale Baptist Church, where he was a member, with Dr. Joe Giaritelli officiating. Interment will follow in Westminster Gardens.


  • Paul Lambeth said,

    Condolences from Big Mo and myself, Tom was always giving of his time and always was a good guy to hang around when covering high school games, he will be missed.