Loading

45°F

35°F

47°F

35°F

47°F

35°F

39°F

42°F

47°F
NEWS STORIES

Remembering a hodag legend - behind the microphone, in the communitySubmitted: 06/25/2013
Ben Meyer
Executive Producer
bmeyer@wjfw.com


RHINELANDER - People in Rhinelander knew him by voice alone.

But Todd McEldowney, the longtime voice of the Hodags, was much more than that to the community.

He died late last month.

"He was synonymous with Hodag sports. He was the voice of the Hodags," says Todd McEldowney, Todd's son.

The senior McEldowney became almost as much of an institution for Rhinelander athletics as the Hodag itself.

His 33 years behind the radio microphone and as a teacher at Rhinelander High School inspired, as well as entertained.

"People left him feeling better about themselves and better about the world they lived in, because he truly loved what he was doing," his son remembers.

Football to basketball, softball to snowmobile derbies, WOBT radio to a stint here at Channel 12, and the microphone to the classroom, the Rhinelander community knew and loved him.

"All in all, we had an excellent time together," says his longtime partner, Paul Ebert.

Ebert was with him in the booth for decades.

"I probably preferred basketball on the fact that it was indoors and warm," Ebert laughs.

"If I wasn't with him broadcasting, we were probably fishing for walleyes on the weekend," he says.

Many people thought he could go even bigger than the Northwoods.

"I would think he would have been network caliber," says Ebert.

"He decided that teaching was so important to him, and he loved being around the kids so much, that he was going to stay here in Rhinelander, support his Hodags, and teach for Rhinelander High School," says the junior McEldowney.

Stay, support, and teach - and be vital member of the Rhinelander community.

"He always thanked people that were listening. He mentioned specifically the shut-ins and the people that couldn't get to the games," says his son.

McEldowney signed off with his signature line for the last time in 1988.

"Win or lose, it's always a good idea to back your Hodags," he would say.

But that didn't end his love for Rhinelander.

"He was so proud and so loyal to the Hodags, and that's something he took with him until the day he died," his son says.

He died on May 26th, loving every minute of life.

"He always said in his closings that he hoped people enjoyed the broadcast as much as he enjoyed bringing it to them."

You can help remember McEldowney by aiding in building a new press box at Mike Webster Stadium, Rhinelander's football home.

Make donations out to McEldowney Memorial.

Send them to O'Melia, Schiek, and McEldowney, 4 South Stevens Street, Rhinelander, WI 54501.

Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com





 IN OTHER NEWS
100-year-old grandmother sees six generations in one settingSubmitted: 10/19/2014

Play Video

RHINELANDER - Most people don't get to meet their great, great, great grandchildren. It's one of the perks one Rhinelander woman has after turning 100 years old. All six generations of her family got together Sunday to celebrate their unique family.

"I wouldn't let anything ever happen to you," said 100-year-old, Bea Kofler.

Kofler held her nine day old great, great, great grandson for the first time Sunday.

"He's too precious," Kofler said.

+ Read More
Madison police arrest 1 for urinating on squad carSubmitted: 10/19/2014

MADISON - A Wisconsin man has been arrested for allegedly urinating on a marked Madison Police Department squad car.

A police statement says officers observed the 21-year-old Dodgeville man relieving himself on the squad car late Saturday night near a bar on State Street in downtown Madison. It says several people warned the man that police were approaching, but he didn't stop.

+ Read More
Humane Society takes in more than 60 cats, two dogsSubmitted: 10/19/2014

Play Video

TAYLOR COUNTY - More than 60 cats and kittens will need to be nursed back to health. They were found in a home filled with garbage and junk.

The Taylor County Humane Society got the cats and two dogs last week after their owner passed away. The humane society says the animal's owner can be described as an animal hoarder.

Many of the cats are sick, hungry, and very weak.

+ Read More
A unique way to view the stars Submitted: 10/19/2014

Play Video

MONICO - People living in the Northwoods get the chance to see dozens of stars on a clear night, but with the temperatures dropping, it might not be as enjoyable.

A planetarium in Monico gives you that experience without bone chilling temperatures.

Kovac Planetarium in Monico has been in business since 2007. It took the owner 10 years to build it. 5 to put the planetarium together. Then an additional 5 to actually get it inside.

The owner says when people come to his planetarium, most people don't know what to expect.

+ Read More
Wisconsin park begins cutting dead treesSubmitted: 10/19/2014

MADISON - Workers have started removing nearly 140 dead or dying evergreen trees at Peninsula State Park Golf Course in Door County.

The Department of Natural Resources says a 2011 application of a broadleaf herbicide damaged the trees. The agency says federal environmental officials had approved the herbicide but later stopped its sale after determining it damages evergreen trees.

+ Read More
Voters head to polls early in WisconsinSubmitted: 10/19/2014

Play Video

MADISON - Wisconsin residents can start heading to their local clerks' offices this week to cast early ballots for the Nov. 4 election.

Early voting is set to begin Monday and run through Oct. 31. Municipal clerks can hold early voting from 8 a.m. until 7 p.m. Monday through Friday during those two weeks, although each clerk can set his or her own hours. Clerks without regular office hours must make themselves available by appointment.

+ Read More
Packers set to demolish Lambeau area propertiesSubmitted: 10/18/2014

GREEN BAY - The Green Bay Packers will soon begin demolishing a former Kmart store and other buildings the team owns on property west of Lambeau Field.

Building permits at the Village of Ashwaubenon show that next week work crews will begin tearing down the former Pomp's Tire store, a Hardee's restaurant and several buildings left on the former Big Lots property. The Kmart building and a chiropractor's office will be razed in November after asbestos is removed.

Packers' spokesman Aaron Popkey says it makes sense to knock them down now, so the Packers don't have to heat the buildings through the winter. Some of the land will be used for parking. Popkey says the franchise is still exploring various concepts for the rest of the property.

+ Read More
+ More General News
Search: 




Click Here