Letters

May 18, 2008

Loving Raymond

When I saw yourstory on the greatest game ever, the 1958 Colts-Giants championship game, Inaturally thought it would be another tribute to the great number 19, JohnnyUnitas, who was the winning quarterback that day. I was pleasantly surprised todiscover the little-known story of his top receiver, Raymond Berry, and theamazing persistence he showed to become the best he could be, and one of thegame's best ever.
Steve McKenna, Madison, N.J.

As an eight yearold I watched my first pro football game on TV and saw the Colts beat theGiants in the 1958 NFL championship game (The Best Game Ever, April 28). Thatday I became a lifetime NFL fan and a lifetime Johnny Unitas fan. Your story onthe unique dedication of Raymond Berry and his critical catches down thestretch adds to the mystique of what, 50 years later, is indeed still the bestgame ever.
Steve Kurtz, Casper, Wyo.

The day of TheBest Game Ever was also my wedding day. My family loved football and would notleave the TV until the game ended. Later this year my wife and I will celebrate50 wonderful years together, but it will take another 50 years for my in-lawsto forgive my family for being 15 minutes late to the wedding.
W. James Orovitz, Coral Gables, Fla.

I was glued to theTV set in my home in Maryland on that winter Sunday in 1958 and will neverforget that game. I patterned my play after Raymond Berry, and also the Bears'Harlon Hill, and became an all-state end in 1958 and '59 using head and bodyfakes learned from them.
Jack Divers, Hickory, N.C.

Your article onthe NFL championship game left me with mixed emotions. I was a nine-year-oldGiants fan, and I remember my five-year-old brother and I crying ourselves tosleep after the game. I still say that the Giants were robbed of a criticalfirst down in that game by a bad spot!
John Michels, Montgomery, Ala.

I attended thatgame, at age 21, sitting in the bleachers at Yankee Stadium. My ticket cost $4.I wonder what you can get for four bucks at Yankee Stadium these days.
Allan Henderson, Kearny, N.J.

Raymond Berry wasmy receivers coach at Arkansas in the early '70s. Mark Bowden's story perfectlycaptured Coach Berry's deep humility, innovative training techniques,self-effacing humor and intense focus.
Churchill Buck Young
Rocky Mount, N.C.

In the late '80s Itook my son to the Patriots' training camp. We waited around after practice,hoping to get autographs from some of the coaches, usually the last to leavethe field. Most refused our requests. But Berry, the head coach, not onlysigned our football, he also stayed and spoke with my son about school andsports for at least 20 minutes. He gave us a moment that neither of us willever forget.
Michael F. Grenier, Port St. Lucie, Fla.

Great game? Youbet. It was pivotal, as far as moving football into the public eye. But the1969 Jets-Colts game played a far bigger role in football's becoming thenational pastime.
Frank Moe, Florissant, Colo.

How about 1981divisional playoff game between the San Diego Chargers and the MiamiDolphins?
Jim Sweeney, Oakland

I'm old enough tohave seen the 1958 Colts-Giants game on TV. But Boise State-Oklahoma in the2007 Fiesta Bowl was not only the best football game ever, it was also the mostexciting sporting event ever.
Jeffrey Myers, Medford, N.J.

Still On Board

The story of DaleWebster's surfing for 12,000 days consecutively is one of the most preposterousI have ever read (POINT AFTER, April 28). Delaying marriage for 10 years? Nevervisiting his in-laws' house? Webster needs to seriously reevaluate hispriorities, especially with his wife facing a terminal illness.
Robert Segal, Montreal

Webster's streakof surfing every day for 32 years is an inspiration for anyone trying toachieve a goal.
Bridget Sawyer, South St. Paul, Minn.

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