My pal JDanWuff… “a Good’un”

July21/ 2017

My pal “JDanWuff”…. “A Good’un”

I’m an early-riser, usually up & at’em by 5:15 or so. Have my cuppa Twinings Black English Breakfast Tea. Take Blondie her cuppa coffee (some weird Ethiopian blend??) at 6:00 AM.

Then I decide which of so many windmills I will joust with this day. There is never a shortage of windmills to joust.

I could get discouraged that there are “so many windmills” needing to feel the cold steel of my cyber lance.  I take heart in how many more there would be had I not laid waste half a dozen the day before…

This Friday morning was different. I woke at 3:45. No special anxiety. Sure, our society is one day closer to doing a Thelma & Louise but that’s been the case for Thelma Louisemore than a few years now.

Whether yours truly or “society” dives headlong into the abyss first is The Question.

I checked to see if “the Dimple column” or AP’s piece on Barry Saunders had stirred up any “trouble”.  Nothing I can’t handle. No need to up the security alert level.

I checked Facebook.  There was a short message from “Hokie Jim” up in Danville VA. It mentioned Dan McCollum. There was an assumption that I knew more than I did.  It didn’t take me long to connect the dots.

Dan McCollum a.k.a “JDanWuff” had lost his fight with cancer. Within the past several weeks. A fight JDan has fought for 4-5 years.

I still don’t know the details.  I know this strange little community we have here of BobLee Buddies & Babes has “lost a good’un”.

I don’t know the current actuary tables concerning Life Expectancy.  At what point are we “playing with house money”.

When our time comes will anyone say “But, he/she was so young…”

If “the good die young” are we still “good”?  I’d like to think so.

After almost 20 years, this hardy band of wayfaring pilgrims is decidedly Baby Boomer-centric. Most of you know what “a Hoss Cartwright hat” looks like. You know what “a Eddie Haskell type” is. I don’t give subtitles. I just assume you know. “JDanWuff” knew…

Dan McCollum was a loyal but very rational NCSU alum and fan. He was an engineer who designed water/sewer plants. He had all the jokes that anyone “in the sewage bizness” learns early on. Yes… it flows downhill and if it backs up… you know it.

He was active in the local Civil Air Patrol. Piloting his small plane in search/rescue missions.

He loved his family A LOT. Supposedly we all do but you can tell the ones who REALLY DO.


Yes, JDan and I share a political persuasion. The company he worked for would occasionally hire a few self-righeous millennial nutjobs. We would discuss the possible ramifications of him hitting them in the face with a shovel.

It was our mutual loathing of board monkeys that brought us together 15+ yeas ago.

How many of you remember F-Bomb Alley @ Carter-Finley?

That was waaay back when Chuck The Chest was the messiah du jour that was going to lead WuffNation to gridiron glory.  Who can forget MaryAnne Fox promising a National Championhip?

Anyhoo… there was a section of the Carter-Finley / Trinity Road parking lot on the Fairgrounds side that somehow accumulated the lowest lifeforms in WuffNation. Talk about sewage running downhill.

Most were NOT NCSUers; but simply local human hairballs looking for trouble.

Two marines were KILLED in F-Bomb Alley. So named because any visiting rival fans innocently walking thru that area were literally putting their safety, if not their lives, at risk. The obscenity insults were the least of the danger.

“JDan” and I hooked up with Hokie Jim and his VaTech Clubhouse Tailgaters about 15 years ago and took on F-Bomb Alley. One of Jim’s buddies – “Ivan”- was rumoredOK Corral to be a former Russian SpecOps commando. … We strode thru F-Bomb Alley like the Earp Brothers headed to the OK Corral. The lowlife punks and their skanky girlfriends parted like the Red Sea for Moses.

I recall “JDan” driving up in his vintage T-Bird. Whenever I would see Hokie Jim’s gang at Kenan, they always asked about Dan.

“JDan” was a regular commenter here for many years, until his health priorities demanded the use of his time.  I knew he was out there.

We’ve all known friends who have “gone thru chemo”. JDan was a battler. He fought his fight courageously and with good humor.

I had not heard from him in 3-4 months. Thinking / hoping “remission” would mean he had won the battle. He didn’t.

JDanWuff is not the first BobLee Buddy we have lost here. He won’t be the last.

Dan told me on many occasions over the years how much he enjoyed “whatever it is we do here”.

I guess that’s why I never consider not doing it…

J Dan McCollum was “A Good’un”.


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