Harlem Globetrotter “Meadowlark” Lemon passed away at the age of 83. He played 24 seasons and by his own estimate more than 16,000 games with the Globetrotter organization.
It was the early 70’s and I remember watching his on court antics as a kid, and enjoying Saturday morning cartoons with his team mates solving some sort of problem by playing a friendly game of basketball. And if I remember correctly, they also appeared in a few “Scooby-Doo, Where Are You!” cartoons as well.
But the greatest ‘Globetrotter experience’ I had, was getting to run up and down the basketball court against him and his fellow Trotters in late 1979. Ironic thing is — I’ve never been very good at basketball, but I was the only person to sign up from the 90th Hospital Squadron, so I was an automatic pick.
Anyway, Meadowlark and crew were at Warren AFB, in Cheyenne, Wyoming for a charity basketball game against the Warren Airmen (or whatever we called ourselves.) While we knew we would lose – we ran ourselves ragged trying to get our hands on the basketball and it wasn’t the least bit helpful when the Globetrotter’s did something that made everyone, including us, crack up with laughter.
I had so much fun that night, playing for whatever charity, that I never knew what the score was in the end.