Tom Metters, former Athens Messenger sports reporter, passes away

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Tom Metters, former Athens Messenger sports reporter, passes away

Post by NYBuckeye96 » Tue May 14, 2019 1:18 pm

RIP Tom Metters. I learned a lot of local sports history by reading his old articles on microfilm at Alden Library! ... NMKIWUBMj0
ATHENS — Thomas Waddell Metters was born April 17, 1939 in Columbus, a son of the late Thomas H. and Charlotte Ann Waddell Metters. He is a 1957 graduate of Athens High School and received a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Ohio University in 1965. He died May 10, 2019 at OhioHealth O’Bleness Hospital, Athens.

He served in the Army between 1959 and 1962 and was sports editor of The Traveller at Fort Lee, Virginia between 1960 and 1962. He wrote sports at The Athens Messenger as a journalism student after leaving the Army, continued as a sports writer at The Messenger on a full-time basis after graduating from Ohio University and later on a stringer basis. He was also sports editor of The Messenger for a brief time.

He assisted American Legion officials during the state tournament since 1962 and served as an official scorer at the Legion World Series in Millington, Tennessee in 1989.

He served as a director for the Athens High School Athletic Boosters then later served in an honorary capacity. He was also on the board of the Green and White Club, served as the club’s secretary between 1983 and 2004, received the group’s Jonesy Sams Award in 1987 and served as the organization’s historian since 2004.

Among his other honors are being named to three hall of fames, by the Ohio Prep Sports Writers Association in 1990, the Ohio High School Basketball Coaches in 1993 and the Athens High School boosters in 2000. He also received a contributor award from the Ohio High School Track and Field Coaches Association in 1995 and an Ohio High School Athletic Association media service award in 1998.

He was a member of the Society of Professional Journalists and received a recognition plaque from the group in 1973, and served as president of the Ohio Associated Press Sports Writers Association in 1984. He has been listed in several Marquis publications including Who’s Who in America and received sports writing awards from The Associated Press and Brown Publishing.

He was a member of the First Presbyterian Church in Athens, the Kentucky Colonels and numerous sports writing groups. He bowled in various leagues in Athens for many years and served as league secretary part of that time.

Surviving Tom are his cousins; Don (Bettye) Hendrix of Knoxville, Tennessee, Lois (La-Vern) Reedy of Kingsport, Tennessee, Larry Hendrix of Knoxville, Mary Alice (Gene) Beckman of Moline, Illinois, Ralph (Beverly) Hendrix of Severna Park, Maryland, and Roger (JoAnn) Hendrix of Pasadena, Maryland; also surviving are several of his cousin’s children.

Funeral service will be conducted Friday at 10 a.m. at First Presbyterian Church, 2 N. Court St., Athens, with Rev. Robert Martin officiating. Burial will be in Green Lawn Cemetery, Columbus. Friends may call Thursday from 5-7 p.m. at Jagers and Sons Funeral Home.

The family extends its sincerest thanks and appreciation to Kirk DePue, who took Tom to several Cincinnati Reds baseball games, and insured Tom’s continuous involvement in the local railroad club. At one of the Reds’ games a sports writer covering the game saw Tom in the stands, leading to a pre-game reunion between Tom and a number of local and national sports writers discussing past game coverage and player interviews.

The family also thanks Carl Denbow and family for including Tom in their Christmas celebrations, with a final thank you to Hickory Creek Nursing Home, its staff and administration for their conscientious care of Tom during his stay there prior to his passing.

Please share a memory, a note of condolence or sign the online register book at

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to First Presbyterian Church, 9 N. College St., Athens, OH 45701 or Athens Athletic Boosters, c/o John Rogers, Athletic Director, 1 High School Road, The Plains, OH 45780.

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Re: Tom Metters, former Athens Messenger sports reporter, passes away

Post by Raider6309 » Tue May 14, 2019 1:25 pm

So sad. I know his health had gotten bad the last few years. Probably the most known journalist in the area and the face of the SEOAL. I’d like to see us make press row nicer and name it after him

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Re: Tom Metters, former Athens Messenger sports reporter, passes away

Post by loganlocos » Thu May 16, 2019 9:09 am

Tom was a good man and a lover of his Athens Bulldogs and the SEOAL.

He was one of the last links to the longstanding SEOAL Sportswriters and Broadcasters Association - with names like Junior Wilson, Craig Dunn, and Randy Heath still with us.

I learned a lot from Tom - both in person and from reading his work in The Messenger - I always enjoyed my chances to share our love of HS sports at Rutter Field or McAfee Gymnasium.

May his family and those who loved him find peace.

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Re: Tom Metters, former Athens Messenger sports reporter, passes away

Post by carbon_dated » Sun May 19, 2019 10:25 am

So sad to learn this and I regret not staying in touch with him these last couple years.
I'm sure the good people at Athens HS will find it in their hearts to name something in Tom's honor.
Will miss his stories at the state boys hoops tournament.

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