Announcer Ryan Lefebvre grows on you.
I heard him first do Twins games. “Tell us what you REALLY think,” I’d mutter to the radio. He wasn’t the typical rah-rah “homer” type announcer. I always felt smarter after hearing his commentary.
I was floored learning about the personal challenge of depression that Lefebvre battled. His courageous book The Shame of Me, One Man’s Journey to Depression and Back is something every fan could appreciate.
I appreciated learning that Lefebvre hasn’t forgotten true fans. Life gets in the way for all of us.
In his case, an eight-year gap separated the TTM autograph request sent by Rich Hanson and the response.
Of course, the classy broadcaster included a note of apology and extra signed photos in his reply.
I wrote about Rich Hanson for the blog back in 2010. He’s a talented hobbyist zoned on giving, not just getting. He’ll shoot photos at a minor league ballpark (or a winter league banquet for the minor league Royals affiliate in Burlington, Iowa). Then, he’ll send a photo for the guy depicted, asking for an autograph on the extra.
Was this eight-year turnaround a new record for longest response ever? Rich confirmed the mark, adding these thoughts:
“Probably was the all time record for me. I was really impressed that he took the time to seek me out, to apologize for misplacing the letter and pictures, and for taking the time to respond. So many people would’ve felt embarrassed by and just chucked their oversight or figured that after all that time it didn’t matter anymore. It was very kind of him.”
Well done, Rich. Never give up!
Coming Monday: Former player J.W. Porter’s fascinating autograph commentary!