David Carroll, one of Chattanooga’s great TV and radio broadcasters and a friend for 40 years, was steering me down memory lane today. The subject was the various notable people who, sometimes just at random, found their way into Chattanooga.
So, a short anecdote:
Ed Holtz was the Chattanooga Lookouts’ general manager back in the early 1980s. Great guy, affable, hard-working. He had to deal with the challenge of an old ballpark, ownership transition and the dying out of any novelty affect that baseball’s return in 1976 prompted. Ed had a signature bit of attire: He always wore a Mickey Mouse T-shirt under his “real” shirt. Which often meant Mickey was easily spotted underneath a white golf shirt.
Anyway, I was in the press box at Engel Stadium one night when Ed and Mickey came up behind me.
“I need you to come downstairs,” he said. “There’s somebody I need you to meet.”
“Who?” I asked.
“Karolyn Rose,” he said. (This was well before her son, Pete Rose Jr., would become a Chattanooga Lookout.)
“Ed, do I have to?”
“Yeah, you need to see her. She was just driving through town and found out there was a ball game.”
Then I pleaded, “Ed, I really don’t care much for Pete Rose.”
To which he responded, “Then you two will really hit it off.”
Published by Mark McCarter
Mark McCarter is a long-time newspaper reporter and columnist and four-time Alabama Sportswriter of the Year. He's the author of four books, including "Pandamonium," about the return of pro baseball to north Alabama, "Baseball in Huntsville," and the namesake of this site, "Never a Bad Game."
McCarter has worked for newspapers in Chattanooga, Anniston and Huntsville, and lives now in Huntsville with his wife Patricia. His work has also appeared in Sports Illustrated, Fortune, The Sporting News, Sport, USA Today, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel and a variety of other publications. He is currently assistant athletic director for external operations at the University of Alabama in Huntsville.
A member of sports Halls of Fame in Chattanooga and Huntsville, he was inducted into the Alabama Sports Writers Hall of Fame in 2022 and named one of the "50 Legends" of the organization. He was also honored with the Mel Allen Award for contributions to sports in the state by the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame.
Mark covered the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, 10 NCAA Final Fours, 13 Daytona 500s, four BCS national championship games, five Super Bowls, three World Series, more than 20 bowl games, The Masters, the Kentucky Derby, a heavyweight championship fight and a national political convention and a space shuttle launch.
His most memorable event, though, was the annual Buff Bowl, a flag football game at a Tampa nudist camp on the day before a Super Bowl.
And, to answer your question, no, he was not.
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