Ed Murray, News 9
STILLWATER, Oklahoma -- It's been 10 years since a plane carrying ten members of the Oklahoma State basketball family crashed in Colorado. The plane was returning to Stillwater after a game.
At 6:37 p.m. Thursday night, at the exact time of the crash, the bells at the OSU library will toll 10 times.
One of those lost was a member of News 9's family, Sports Director Bill Teegins. Teegins was living his dream entertaining many with sports on a nightly basis and calling the action as the radio voice of the Oklahoma State Cowboys.
Bill Tietgens, Bill's father, shared his thoughts on this 10th remembrance. Tietgens said from his first day to his final sportscast, his son loved his job.
"I'd say when he was about eight or nine years old he talked about getting into a sports career. You know, broadcasting. And I couldn't understand that because most kids want to be a fireman or cowboy or something at that age. And I said, well, I didn't say he couldn't do it, but I said ‘Chances are Bill, it's not going to be that easy to get into that.' But he always had that dream," Tietgens said.
And Bill's dad watched that boy grow into his dream.
"He would actually be out in the garage. He had a rope hanging from the ceiling and he'd have a ball on there, a tennis ball, and he'd be batting all the time, practicing batting, and he'd be talking like he was broadcasting the game," Tietgens remembered.
Bill's father said by the time his son was 12 or 13 years old, he knew more about sports than his dad.
"I mean he had a photographic memory. I don't know how he did it but he'd be talking to my friends sitting there and they'd be talking to him, not me. I was kind of left out of it," Tietgens laughed.
Tietgens said that's all his son ever wanted was a career in sports.
"That's what he wanted to do. And he just stuck with it. I was kind of surprised at first that he would get into it, but he was kind of a natural in it. He did well," Bill's father said.
Bill's father is thankful News 9 and Oklahomans will always remember.
"Something about Oklahoma, they really come out. And you know this thing, you wouldn't think it would last as long because there have been so many tragedies just like the one the other day in Tucson. I mean it's sad to say there are so many bad things that have happened. But they still keep this thing going which is amazing to me," Tietgens said.
"We had Bill for 48 years. Some of these people didn't have their sons for very long. They were pretty good young guys. Bill was one of the older ones on the airplane, so we were fortunate that way. But oh yeah, we miss him every day but time goes on, you know."