Interesting Reads of Exceptional People and History

~ Welcome ~

Let me share with you some of the sections within my new book,

Finding Frank: Full Circle in a Life Cut Short.



At first glance, if there’s anything striking about his image, it may very well be the smile. It shows Buncom with an exuberance for life and an exuberance for his future. And it’s that wonderful openness, that wonderful smile that embodied him so well.

That Buncom reached a certain stature playing college and professional football falls far short if using only that yardstick in measuring and quantifying his life, calculating his contributions. If it were at all possible, if asked today, most probably Frank Buncom would not want to be measured by his football accomplishments, no matter how high they may have been. The guess is, he’d much prefer judging his influence on other people and how that inspiration may have been helpful.

So how does one correctly measure a life and evaluate an existence? What separates typical, normal experiences from, in Buncom’s case, extraordinary hope, extraordinary virtue? What suggests uniqueness in a life, a specialness?

Maybe the process in finding extraordinary does not have to be so complex, so terribly perplexing. Maybe all one has to do is reach back to a childhood, reach back into a previous time and pull out nuggets, pull out charms and snippets that suggest the unexpected and the unusual.

Finding Frank: Full Circle in a Life Cut Short

$ 16.00 USD

Limited Time!

Special offer for readers of this website:

$9.99 -- a savings of $4.00! (plus sales tax and $5.00 shipping charge)

Finding Frank is a great read for anyone who is interested in exceptional personalities during an exceptional period in this country's history -- the 1960's. Frank Buncom's lessons are still being taught 44 years after his death.


NOVEMBER 2, 1939 - SEPTEMBER 14, 1969


The San Diego Chargers recognized Frank Buncom by making him a posthumous member of the Chargers Hall of Fame, with their inaugural class in 1976. ~ Todd Tobias


That there would be no future for Frank Buncom could not have been foretold that morning. He was 6’ 1”, 240 pounds and able to dominate football opponents with speed, strength, and bruising, thunderous booms. By all accounts except for a recent knee injury, he was healthy, robust, and serene; he and his wife of just one year recently had celebrated the birth of Frank III. But in the dead of that night, at the prime of his life, he lay dying, struggling to inhale.

Ernie Wright was awakened at 7:00 am by Buncom’s laboring for breath. According to reports the next day, Wright did everything possible to help his friend. “Frank woke me up. He was breathing like he had an asthmatic attack or something. I called to him then went over to his bed and shook him – real good. I got no response. I checked his mouth to make sure he wasn’t having a convulsion and swallowing his tongue. Then I called for help. There was nothing else I could do.”

When Cincinnati’s paramedics and Bengal team trainers arrived that morning in room 139, Frank James Buncom, Jr., was dead.

He was 29 years, 10 months and 12 days old.

A few hours before game time in the Bengal locker room, Wright somehow harvested the perseverance to speak to his teammates and other club personnel, purposely avoiding a “win one for the Gipper” speech. Rather, he reminisced, “It wasn’t the place for Hollywood. Frank wasn’t Hollywood. We were all in a state of terrible grief. The team — everyone — was deeply touched by Frank.” 2

Days later, trust funds established by both the San Diego Chargers and the Cincinnati Bengals players were created for Buncom’s wife Sarah and seven-week old son.

When asked why two competing professional football teams would start similar endowments, former Charger teammate Ron Mix said, “Because of the manner of man Frank Buncom was. It’s our way of providing tangible proof to Frank’s son that his father was loved by all who knew him, a man to emulate.” 3


Some 40 years later in an assertion to Buncom’s perpetual admiration by people who knew him, former teammate Bob Petrich remembered the man. “Frank Buncom was the gentlest person you would ever hope to meet. I was with him in Cincinnati when he died. Frank was so special; kids loved him.” And, Petrich added, “He hit like a mule on the field.”

Frank was just the happiest, nicest man. That was a guy that I’d lay down my life for, in a heartbeat — I really would.

“He was an angel. Frank’s up in heaven somewhere.”



*** Excerpt taken from: Finding Frank: Full Circle in a Life Cut Short

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