It was Labor Day, 1913, when a rising star in the journalism world hopped a train in his hometown of Freeport IL, arriving a short time later in Madison at this depot. He was going to have a routine medical procedure, a tonsillectomy, before leaving for his first job after graduation from the University of Wisconsin. Tragically, the operation went bad and he died on the operating table. He was the second national president of Sigma Delta Chi, now known as the Society of Professional Journalists. Ever since, SDX/SPJ has awarded the highest annual honor bestowed on members in the name of their second president, the Wells Memorial Key.
Plans for a memorial centennial ride fell through, but last year I was able to complete the Madison to Freeport ride with my good friend Cameron Mooney.
This year I felt another ride coming on, and with a pre-ride yesterday, from Deerfield to Aztalan, was actually able to cover the same distance (about 64 miles) over two days.
Getting an early start this morning, I found traffic on the John Nolen Drive bike trail quite light.