W&L for life

by

By: Andy Krauss
Former Assistant SID
Guest Blogger

In January of 1998, Brian Logue asked me to come down to interview for an assistant sports information director position at a small university I had barely heard of in an even smaller southern town I had never heard of.  As a recent college graduate my response was “why not?”  Bold words from a young man who had just graduated from a school of 30,000 at the University of Maryland and was used to the big city feel of the Baltimore-Washington corridor.

I took that job at Washington and Lee University and 14 years later, both the school and the town of Lexington hold prominent places in my heart.

The fondness I grew for Lexington and its charm grew so much after the 15 months I spent at W&L, that I decided to return after a year away and spend four years on the other side of town at VMI, where I also had an incredible experience.

It was the personal friendships that I developed at both schools that have had the most impact of my life and continue today.  Brian Laubscher, who I worked with at W&L for the final nine months convinced me to come back and work at VMI.  We spent countless workdays as co-workers and colleagues meeting for lunch and discussing the challenges of our business.   Today, he is still one of my most trusted friends and I was honored to serve as a groomsman in his wedding, which was held in where else, but downtown Lexington.

Brendan Harrington was a freshman at W&L when I started.  Our unique interests in sports led to an instant friendship.  It became stronger when I returned to Lexington.  Although I live in suburban Washington, D.C. and he lives in upstate New York, we manage to talk at least once a week.

Rich Campbell had not even enrolled at W&L when I was working there.  Our paths crossed when I was in my final year at VMI and he had returned to work at the Lexington News-Gazette, fresh off a four-year career in the W&L Sports Information office.  We also became friends instantly and when we returned to the Washington area the next fall, he helped me make professional connections and created career opportunities that have led to my gameday position as the Washington Redskins internal public address announcer.  He is also a cherished friend.

Quite honestly, this list could go on forever: Scott McGuinness, Greg Murphy, XaK Bausch, of course Brian Logue…and this is only people from the W&L side of things.  Please don’t get mad at me if I leave you out.  I could write a whole other column about how much my friends at VMI mean to me.

And W&L follows you everywhere.  Five years ago, I was walking around Brookline Avenue, on my way to Fenway Park to see my beloved Baltimore Orioles lose again.  From across the street, I heard the most undeniable New England accent I have ever known.   Of course, it was then-W&L athletic director Michael F. Walsh, who was in town to visit family and enjoy the game.  I crossed the street and we discussed all of our W&L friends for a good 10 minutes, shook hands and went about our merry ways.

W&L’s contributions to my social circle are truly a testament to students it attracts and the people it hires.  I have always felt nothing by welcomed when I have walked around campus.  People are always, friendly, inviting, intelligent and just fun to be with.

I try to make it back to Lexington once a year and usually make it.  It is more than worth it to catch a game on either campus, but even more worth it to catch up with old friends or even loose acquaintances.   I am reminded daily of the town that means so much to me by the painting of North Main Street that hangs in my Silver Spring Easter Seals office.

The mountains, storefronts and fall foliage are all beautiful…but not nearly as much as the friends that I have made for life!

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One Response to “W&L for life”

  1. XaK Says:

    Good piece.

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