When one started work at the Iron Mountain News in the 1980s, the individual had to endure a bit of teasing.
Edmund Henry (Hap) Rondeau and his partner in crime, yours truly, often amused ourselves by joking around with our fellow newspaper staffers.
We could get under the skin of some. One new gal, a tough Croatian with a big heart, gave it back to us with both barrels.
We threw up the white flag. We didn’t anticipate a comeback from a Gladstone girl.
That was Linda (Marmilick) Lobeck’s initiation to the office. She went on to make a major impact on our life and many others.
An award-winning reporter in her 34 years, she covered cities, schools and businesses, and also turned out features on a variety of topics.
When you’ve been working next to somebody for 30 years, you develop more than a working relationship.
We once had a cheese-fudge making contest in the office. If memory serves, Lindy was tied for second with Tangelo Pete while I took honors with the help of my mother.
However, nobody made better potato salad than Lindy. She also served a venison lasagna that was top shelf.
When Lindy let it be known that sewing wasn’t one of her strong points, we couldn’t resist a call to her home one night. One of her sisters answered and I asked if Linda was taking in shirts to have buttons replaced.
“You sew?” I could hear in the background.
“Must be that darn Angeli,” Lindy replied.
She wasn’t a big pro sports fan, but did like the Lions when they played her hubby Pat’s Vikings.
She attempted to look calm when her boys, Ryan and my godson Matt, were playing tennis, football, basketball and wrestling for the Mountaineers and Green Knights. I couldn’t help but smile seeing Lindy rock in her seat during tense wrestling matches.
Once you got to know Lindy, one realized that the holidays meant plenty. She seemed to glow after those family trips to Negaunee for Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Another holiday tradition was the Lobeck Christmas lights going up before Pat could hit the woods for deer hunting.
This was also the time to receive my tin of tasty cookies with chocolate kisses and butterscotch chips.
“Remember to share with (your wife) Gina,” Lindy would say.
She also became a grandmother to Madelyn in the past few years. Lindy beamed when telling of her grandmother-granddaughter experiences.
And then the phone call to my home on Wednesday morning, Nov. 8, 2017. Cookie choked out words about Linda passing away. My response was a groan, just like when TP called in August of 2015 that editor Blaine Hyska had passed away.
Funeral services will take place in a few hours. My heart goes out to Pat, Ryan and Matt.