Loving what you do


A new "For Pete's Sake" blog appears each Thursday.

I'd like to take a moment today to write about Jim Kelley from Buffalo. No, that's not a typo in his last name. That's because I'm not referring to the Bills' quarterback with a bronze bust in the gallery located two floors above my office.

Kelley, the long-time hockey writer from Buffalo passed away from pancreatic cancer on Tuesday afternoon. I did not know Jim personally; I was only familiar with his writing on a sport that he and I loved. His impact on the hockey world was recognized by the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2004 when he was bestowed the prestigious Elmer Ferguson Award. On top of that, he and I shared a high regard for our hometown.

I am incredibly moved by a story about his death that I've read in the vast number of tributes circulating the hockey world yesterday and today like Kevin Allen's remembrance in USA Today or Jerry Sullivan's column in the Buffalo News.

What has left a lasting impression with me is that Kelley amazingly filed his last column with Sportsnet.ca at 1:30 a.m. on Tuesday. He lost his struggle with cancer later that afternoon. Kelley did what loved right up to the day he died! How great is that?

Last week my family and I enjoyed Thanksgiving with my brother and his family. During the visit, a friend of my brother by the name of Alex was marveling at the job I have at the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He, like so many others, commented that I must absolutely love my job. He then shared an interesting tidbit about something he recently read. It stated that if you enjoy your job more than 50 percent of the time that you should consider yourself lucky.

I thought about that for a while. Like all jobs, there are plusses and minuses to it. But, all-in-all, I am lucky to come to work and be involved in sports and work day-in and day-out around something that I'm passionate about and enjoy so much.

Today, I think about how Jim Kelley continued to do what he loved right up until the last hours of his life.

That's a lesson that should be shared with all.

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