About Me

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I am a freelance writer. I've covered the Cincinnati Reds, Bengals and others since 1992. I have a background in sales as well. I've sold consumer electronics, advertising and consumer package goods for companies ranging from the now defunct Circuit City to Procter&Gamble. I have worked as a stats operator for Xavier University, the University of Cincinnati, the College of Mount St. Joe and Colerain High School.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Young Pharmacist Discovered A Cincinnati Reds Icon

Bernie Stowe sitting Reds team pic 50's
Ralph Tate had a conflict.  Young Tate could not fulfill his role as the Cincinnati Reds' clubhouse boy and his new job at a pharmacy.  Ralph wanted to be a pharmacist and as much as he loved baseball, he had a job that would have a major effect on his future.

Little did he know that his decision would create a lifelong career that would introduce three generations to the inner workings of the Reds' clubhouse.

Ralph asked the Reds if young Bernard Stowe, all of 16, if he could take his place in the Red's clubhouse.  The Reds accepted and Bernie Stowe stayed the rest of his life.

Bernie and Sons Rick left Mark right
The 80-year old Stowe passed away February 10 on the day the Reds' equipment truck started its journey to spring training.  Bernie made the trip to spring training even after he turned the clubhouse over to sons Rick and Mark in 2013.  Rick runs the Reds' clubhouse.  Mark runs the clubhouse for the visiting team.  Rick's son Luke and Mark's son Nathan also work there.

Bernie, who suffered from a gradual loss of memory, the last few years, will be laid to rest on Monday after services at Holy Family Church on 3006 W 8th Street at 9:30 Monday February 15th. Visitation will be held at Bernie's beloved Elder High School on Sunday February 14th from 3:00 pm - 7:00 pm.

There are so many stories that Bernie had to tell. There is not enough time to tell them all.  There were players that had the reputation of being bad guys that only Bernie could get through to.  Edinson Volquez comes to mind.  The Reds traded Josh Hamilton to the Texas Rangers for a talented malcontent pitcher from the Dominican Republic.  Right away there was a connection between Volquez and Stowe.

I first met Bernie when he kicked me out of the Reds' dugout at Crosley Field when I was eight years old.  The Reds' clubhouse was actually in the parking lot behind the stands at Crosley Field.  Players had to walk through the fans to get to the dugout.  During games there was a security guard, Howard, who kept people from walking into the dugout rather than the portal to the stands that was a few feet away.  One day I lost my parents on the way back from the concession stand and while "old Howard" was distracted as I walked past his chair into the Reds dugout.  Bernie was in the dugout attending to the Reds' game equipment.  He had a catcher's mask belonging to Johnny Edwards in his hand. The players were all on the field for pregame workouts. Berinie told me that I was not allowed there but before he escorted me out, he let me put the over sized catcher's mask on.

I met him several times through my father, who was the bartender at Wiggins Tavern (Westin Hotel) on Fifth and Vine.  Reds' clubhouse directors Chesty Evans and Harry Faye would frequent the place with Bernie.

Since I started covering the Reds in 1992, Bernie and I had many conversation about baseball, Elder vs Colerain football and many other subjects.  He invited me, a Colerain foreigner, to Elder;s Dad's Club.  I met Ralph Tate and his buddies there and had such a great time with them watching films of Elder's games from the previous Friday.

Bernie could tell a joke and turn a phrase as well as anyone.

One day while standing in the clubhouse waiting to talk to a player.  Bernie came up to me and asked, "Schatzy did you hear about the fire in the whore house?  Some come a runnin and some run a comin."

The Reds named the Clubhouse at Great American Ball Park in his honor.  Rest well my friend.  You  will be missed.

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