Under A Purple Sky update

About the author

Don Barone

Don Barone

db has been in the reporting biz for over 30 years, won some Emmys and other awards, but is proudest of his four-decade marriage, his two kids and the fact he founded Tackle The Storm Foundation to help children.

Dateline: I-84 North

Trucks rocked the minivan.

Sedans sped by.

The windshield wipers were on high.

Mist everywhere.

And I let the phone ring for a moment.

Maybe two.


Because on the Droid there was a photo of who was calling.

It was a deep breath call.

It was Terry Baksay.

And I knew what the phone call was about.

His PET scan.

His cancer.

His purple sky.

"Hello." It was a hello with a stall built in. Long. Pensive. Worry lines.

"db, it's Terry."

"Yeah dude, I see ... " Then I asked a question. THE question.

"... how you doing?"

Waited for an answer I both wanted to know ... and not.

I wasn't going to say another word, until Terry answered, would have sat on the side of I-84N forever if it took that.


I heard Terry breathe, once, twice, three times. He never heard me, I couldn't breathe, couldn't get the breath. No movement.

Except the windshield wipers.

I sat and watched the rain run down the windshield.

"db ... I'm OK ... cancer free."


"Cancer free, my docs are very happy -- couldn't find any sign of the cancer."

We talked a bit, Terry said he competed -- COMPETED -- in a tournament this past weekend.

"I stunk. Did horrible."

I just smiled ... dude you are cancer free ... and that's pretty much the only tournament that counted.

We talked a bit, complained, laughed, thought.

Then I hit the turn signal, got up to speed and continued on I-84N.

And drove through the mist.

On the highway.

And ...

"Yes it's moments like this that make me wish

I could freeze frame time."

Freeze Frame Time

Brandon Rhyder


-- db

Don Barone is an award-winning outdoors writer and a member of the New England Outdoor Writers Association and the Outdoor Writers Guild of the U.K. You can reach db at www.donbaroneoutdoors.com.