I’ve been lucky in my life to have had some great career mentors. One of those mentors now needs my help. His name is Brian McIntyre. I first met B-Mac, as we all call him, when I was a freshman at Ohio University. He was already a big-name TV reporter in the Cleveland market, but he always came back to OU to talk to all of us young, aspiring, journalists. Brian made a point of learning our names, watching our newscasts, and then critiquing our work with us after each show. It took time. It took patience. But you could see he loved it.
Years later, when I was 25 and working as an anchor in Charlotte, I landed a job at Fox 8 in Cleveland. One of my first calls was to B-Mac. He was as proud of me as my own parents! Brian gave me loads of advice, from where to live, to the ins and outs of the TV market. When I moved to Cleveland, he took me to dinner, gave me a tour of the city and even copied his own rolodex of news contacts for me.
Over the years, while we were both reporting for different TV stations in Cleveland, we would run into each other on stories. He would always say something over the top when he saw me, like, “There’s the most beautiful woman in Cleveland!”. He said that stuff to everyone to lift us up and make us smile. It always worked! When I would complain about my job, he always said, “We have the best jobs in the world” and he was able to remind me of why I became a reporter in the first place.
Now Brian is in the fight of his life. Cancer has taken over his body and he is now under Hospice care. He has a beautiful wife and an adorable five year old son. Brian was the breadwinner for his family. His wife, a Cleveland school teacher, was recently laid off. While Brian does have insurance, the bills are still piling up. On May 19th, a benefit is being held to help cover expenses for Brian and his family.
Here is the information.
Anything that any of you can do will be truly appreciated by this wonderful family.
Though I haven’t talked to Brian in a while and have kept up with his journey mostly by Facebook, I feel such a profound sense of gratitude to this man. Have I taken the time to mentor someone the way he did me, and so many others? No. Do I exude positive energy and hopefulness when I walk into a room? Not always. The question is, why not? I am now going to try make a conscious effort to be more like one of my mentors. B-Mac would want me to pay it forward.