Thank you, Steve Lardy

To The Sun:

How lucky this community has been. Within my lifetime, I have had the grace to enjoy the rare skills of two men. Jack Harris (the late Parsons Sun sports editor) and Steve Lardy (KLKC Radio). Now Steve has announced that he is leaving this community to enjoy a well deserved retirement. I hope this editorial will illuminate my appreciation for the man and the sportscaster that is Steve Lardy.

When he first came to this community he probably did not realize what he was getting himself into. For many years, he not only performed on the radio, but he coached, officiated and announced at all kinds of athletic events. His recognizable voice told the listener that Steve was “not from around here.” Even to this day, he has never corrected that tell-tale “O” sound and the northern twing that betrays his Minnesota upbringing. I know of people who have been absent from Parsons for 15 years that recognized the voice on the radio as Steve’s and did so without assistance.

It is my opinion that Steve will be sorely missed. Sure, there will be future sportscasters at KLKC. For me they can never replace this icon. It would be like putting a size 5 foot into a size 12 shoe. He has covered this community during the good times and the bad. In his work, Steve brought imagery and energy to each and every task he performed. For any fan listening, he used the airwaves like an artist uses a paint brush. His voice rattled off stats, figures and numbers like a machine gun and then filled in the blanks with energetic colors. In the interview process, he created a relaxed and open environment. He was insightful and compelling to the interviewee scoring success with even the most reluctant. His wide range of sports interests included basketball, football, track, tennis, baseball, golf, fishing, softball, volleyball and wrestling. However, it was his unabashed love for baseball that was most evident.

I don’t know what made me believe that Steve would always be here. Perhaps because it seemed as though he had always been here. Much like that miniature Statue of Liberty on the lawn of the middle school or the statue of the soldier at the Municipal Building, Steve Lardy stood out as an integral part of this community. Unlike the work of a sports writer, I cannot cut out Steve’s words from the paper and paste it into my scrapbook. Yet Steve’s words have no less impact upon me and my family’s sports life. After all, I do have a memory and a great portion of it is reserved for the work of Steve Lardy. We will never know how much of his service to the Parsons’ sports community was salaried and how much was donated. We do know that it was all done out of love and done so very, very right.

Speaking for Cardinal athletics, for me and my family, I salute you old friend and wish you the very best. Thank you for the many years of service. No price can be placed up on what you gave us. — JODY THOMPSON, Parsons, and family

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