Lions raise more than #036;6,000 for the blind

Published 12:00 am Saturday, October 30, 2004

On Wednesday, a group of local citizens took over the mikes at a Greenville radio station from morning ’til afternoon. However, it was a friendly takeover for a worthy cause – conservation of one of our most precious gifts, the gift of sight.

Taking over the airwaves

The Greenville Lions Club held their 24th Annual Radio Day at the Q-94 studios downtown. From 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Wednesday, members of the civic club read ads from Radio Day sponsors, gave out prizes donated by local businesses to folks calling in during the trivia contest, and encouraged listeners to phone in and nominate their candidate for &uot;Ugliest Man in Greenville.&uot;

Email newsletter signup

The winner of the eagerly awaited annual contest receives the honor of riding seated atop his &uot;throne&uot; (which looks suspiciously like a toilet) on the back of Lion Mack Russell’s pickup truck during the upcoming Greenville Christmas Parade.

Several local gentlemen, including Philip Graham, Brandon Sellers, Steve Hines, Reggie Mantooth and Keith Taylor were nominated for this prestigious award.

The man who ended up on the top of the heap, however, was Roger Lansdon (a.k.a. Langley, Langford, Landers and Langston), who had many enthusiastic supporters calling in that critical last hour to attest to his ugliness.

Lansdon joins the distinguished roster of past ugliest men that includes Dr. Norman McGowin, Steve Lee, Dr. Marvin Hewlett, Dr. Everett Snow, Arnold Boggan and others.

Good fun for a good cause

The day was conducted in a spirit of good fun as Lions bantered playfully with their callers and fellow Lions in the studio.

&uot;Come on, Big C, say ‘War Eagle’,&uot; said one caller to famed Bama supporter, Lion Colin MacGuire.

(MacGuire’s only response: &uot;Roll Tide!&uot;)

The monies raised by the many businesses supporting Lions Radio Day topped over $6,000 this year, Lion Radio Emcee Mack Russell said.

&uot;The money raised today goes to our sight-related charities, including Alabama Lions Sight, which, among other things, brings the Sight Bus to our schools for vision and hearing screenings; Southeastern Guide Dogs, which trains animals to assist the blind, and other charities,&uot; Russell explained to listeners on Wednesday.

&uot;We also provide eyeglasses for those needy folks in our area who can’t really afford them, so if you are in need or know someone who is, please contact our Sight Chairman, Bob Glasscock, at Butler Services and he will be happy to help you,&uot; Russell added.

‘Well pleased’

Radio Day Chairman, Lion Ricky Cargile, pronounced himself well pleased with the events of the day, in spite of one 22-minute stretch of dead air when the radio transmission tower temporarily went down. &uot;Other than that, I’d say everything went extremely well,&uot; he commented.

He and Russell commended their fellow Lions for their work in selling ads, gathering prizes for giveaways and coming in to talk on the radio. Lion Herbert Morton was the top ad seller for the event, Cargile said.

&uot;We’ve had lots of people calling in today and winning these wonderful prizes donated by local businesses. We want to thank everybody for participating and a big thanks goes out to all our sponsors for their support,&uot; Cargile commented. He also thanked Q-94 deejay Mark Ritchie for his willingness to &uot;catch a lot of grief from all of us today.&uot;

&uot;We appreciate Mark and everyone down here at the station for their support,&uot; Cargile added.

Next year will be the 25th anniversary of Lions Radio Day in Greenville. Cargile is pondering the possibility of a contest bringing back all past &uot;Ugliest Man&uot; winners for a sort of &uot;Ugliest All-Stars&uot; event. &uot;It’s certainly something to consider for next year,&uot; he said with a smile.

The Greenville Lions Club meet at the YMCA Beeland Park location at noon on the first four Mondays of each month.