I have a strange, co-incidental Christmas story for you.
The year I came to 630 CHED, 1971, was also the first year another young man, also named Bob, drove for Santas Anonymous.
Like others in the 1970s he had longish hair, and wore a sheepskin coat, and drove an old car, and when he heard Jerry Forces say “Mommy was that Jesus?” he was so touched he had to visit and tell me about it.
When my book Welcome To Radio came out, this same Bob bought one of a thousand copies from the first print run — and got the only copy that was mis-assembled by the printer. I drove to his house to replace it.
Last weekend, this same Bob was in line to deliver for 630 CHED Santas Anonymous — his 47th year. After being patient in the chilly wind, the line was cut off right in front of him. Sadly, there were no more packages left to deliver.
He stood there devastated and could not bring himself to leave. Forty-seven years. How could he miss a year, now?
And then it happened: The lady who was the last to show her drivers license and insurance to the Santas delivery team was told her insurance had expired. She would not be able to deliver.
Bob would go from sad to elated as he was asked to take her place and the annual “last bag” ceremony was held with him as the honoured driver.
Strange that things happen in threes.
Merry Christmas Bob Demers!
Bob Layton is the news manager of the Corus Edmonton group of radio stations.