Well…my old friend and running buddy has moved on to a better place. Tom and I met in 2002 when we shared an office. My first day there, he invited me to his house for lunch and to meet Billie, his wife. I heard he was a “legend” so I said “sure…let’s go”! Unfortunately, he drove and by the time we reached “the projects” I needed a Valium and/or a stiff drink! I fell in love with “Miss Billie” from the beginning. She cooked up a “good old country boy” lunch which included iron-skillet cornbread and fresh collard greens. Well…me being in radio and an old “professional musician” and Tom being in Mr. Radio and a “booking agent”, it didn’t take us long to figure out we had a lot in common and knew a lot of the same people. He was 18 years older than me so he had more stories…it was never a contest …we just enjoyed each other’s company. We had lunch together at least twice a week. Always on Wednesdays at Loggins Restaurant because it was “Butterbean Day” and everybody kind of “expected us (him) to be there” 😉 Tom never had a “gadget” (computer) so I handled all his emails and folks…he had friends and fans everywhere! I’m already missing him…I love him and Miss Billie like family but it was time for him to go. I don’t want to remember him like he was at the end…I will always remember him as “Old Tom”…my buddy! And to you Tom…if they’re handing out wings up there…DON’T TAKE ‘UM! You might not be the first DJ IN heaven but if you fly like you drive…you could be the first DJ asked to LEAVE heaven!
Smil’n Jack Benner