ROBB AUSTIN'S TURN
My Good Friend Freddie Wells Passed Away
June 11, 2014
I just got the sad word that a lifelong friend – Freddie Wells passed away last week. Freddie and I go back to the ninth grade at North Bethesda Junior High School. He was a cross between actors James Dean and a young Marlo Brando. As juveniles, he taught me it was fun to be bad, and I shall never forget the adventures and good times we had in our youth.
When I was in college, Freddie drove through a blizzard on the Pennsylvania Turnpike to see me play in the Steel Bowl in Pittsburgh against Duquesne in my first college basketball game.
Many years later, when I feared my consulting practice had hit a glass ceiling, he flew in from Florida to meet me in Washington DC for a week of professional brainstorming to help me decide where to focus my consulting practice. At the time, his emotional support kept me in business.
He would later help me raise money in Charlotte, North Carolina for Vice President George H.W. Bush. The Secret Service thought they had met everybody, but they hadn’t met Freddie.
In the cult movie classic, Stand By Me, Richard Dreyfuss makes a brief appearance at the end of the movie as he finishes the story and types these final words into his computer, “I never had any friends later on like the ones I had when I was twelve. Does anyone?"
RIP my good friend. It was an honor and my good fortune to know you.