Wednesday, 12 December 2007

Greg, Ted & Bobbie

In fall of 1969, two editors of the St. Clair College student newspaper in Windsor were called up before the college president for publishing not-so-jolly sentiments.

Sentiments like the Vietnam war in one issue of St. Clair and a poem by Black Panther chairman Bobby Seale, peppered with four-letter words, in the next issue.

On the carpet before a visibly upset Dr. R.C. Quittenton, college president, were student editors Ted Welch and Greg Parent.

"The editors reported he (Quittenton) used the four-letter word meaning sexual intercourse several times in his monologue with them," said a Canadian University Press story.

To make a long story short, the student council fired Ted and Greg as editors and the paper went back to being jolly in fear of losing its funding, office space and equipment.

Ted and Greg, the two amigos, didn't despair. They later worked together and made waves together at the Toronto Sun in the 1970s and '80s.

While Ted didn't mince words as the Sun's well-read city hall columnist, he did hold back on the four-letter words and Black Panther poems.

Then Ted bid the Sun adieu and he and his wife, Marj, packed their bags and headed west to start a new life in scenic Victoria, B.C., setting up Ermine Communications, a writing and editing business.

Now, Sun vets know Ted for his writing, his conversations, his parties and his unique style of poker playing - but a man who dotes on a pup named Bobbie?

Sure enough, says Marj, who e-mailed us Exhibit A: A photo of Ted and Bobbie.

"She's managed to keep Ted busy for the last year and a half," says Marj. "He is always willing to meet her demands for walks and play."

John Duffy, Brian Vallee, Mike Rutsey, Sean McCann, Al Dickie and his other former poker buddies probably wouldn't believe Ted's puppy bond without the photo.

Thanks Marj.

So Ted has mellowed since his 1960s college newspaper days, when he and Greg tackled non-jolly stories like the Vietnam war and pissed off a college president.

Former colleagues, friends and readers who lost contact with Ted and Marj since they moved West can reach them by e-mail through Ermine Communications.

Marj says Ted is working on a book and she is writing forestry-related features for various government and industry organizations.

Our thoughts are with you both - and Bobbie.

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