TBT Time…

Not sure if it’s spring fever or old age but it’s been a lethargic and listless couple of weeks. The following is from 2016….


The recent back and forth about company support for hunts and programs struck a chord with me in that I used to be on the receiving end when I was Marketing Manager for Garrett back in the late 80’s. There was never ever a slow day when it came to people or groups asking about freebies for some event or project.

I would usually start by sorting the good from the bad, or to be more precise, the legit from the scams, and yes we had them…. one in particular always comes to mind, and though I shared it some time ago on the website I thought I would post it again here….

It was a letter from a Father John Smith (or something similar) of St. Cheats Catholic Church (not a real church) in Chicago, Illinois, and he was writing on behalf of Johnny Jones, who was diagnosed with a rare disease and had only a few weeks to live (photo included of an extremely emaciated young man, much like those you would see from a WWII Nazi death camp).


Father Smith continued…”while on his death-bed, one of Johnny’s last requests was to own a Garrett Master Hunter ADS metal detector (model GT#4555, page 8 in catalog), with the 8 inch coil (catalog number GT333, page 15), a deepseeking 14 inch coil (catalog number GT444, page 15), hard carrying case (catalog number GT555, page 16) and the Garrett digger (catalog number GT666, page 17)”.

Father Smith asked if we could “find it in our heart” to send these items to Johnny’s home (address given), and if we did he knew it would make his last days on earth that much more memorable.

After all of us at the factory passed the letter around and had a good laugh, I decided to see if I could contact Father Smith, and called information for the number of St. Cheats Catholic church in Chicago. Of course there was no listing, nor was there for Father Smith. I then decided to try and find a phone number for poor little Johnny Jones (if of course he was still alive), and surprise, surprise….there was one.

I dialed the number, and a young man answered the phone. I asked if I might to talk to Johnny Jones, and he said “this is he”….. I asked how he was feeling, and he was curious why I asked such a question. I said I heard about his rare condition and saw his photo, and it didn’t seem like he would be able to pick up a phone, let alone talk as cheerfully as he did. Next thing I heard was a click….he hung up.

So for all you tekkies who think your needs or your request is above reproach and a sure thing, consider all this and remember that YOUR request is not the only one being considered. I will also add that almost all the major detector manufacturers go out of their way to help any and all legitimate requests. If yours was denied maybe look at the way you worded it, or just what it was you were asking for.  Likewise don’t tell the company that their contribution/donation, or lack thereof, will affect their bottom line. They are not that stupid or gullible and know very well what they are doing.

Happy Hunting…


TBT Photo

Taking refuge…Eleanor Hube, Fay & I and Ken Gudernatch, Longleat Rally, UK 1987



Filed under Metal Detecting

13 responses to “TBT Time…

  1. What a shocking story…I am appalled. Phew! And I’m looking for a mere 20 Bucks and by the time I get get it, I’ll probably be on my deathbed too.

    Best wishes

    The Right Reverend, His Eminence…

  2. john taylor

    for xxsakes dick! always jetting across the “big pond” to play with the queen!
    and you said you did “not like working for charlie?..yeah! where’s john’s 20?
    you can go across the pond and drink “room temperature” beer,and make an ass
    of yourself,but pay your obligations?..ohh! no! not me! ole’ johnny will have ta wait!
    good breath of the life! ..i’m just sayin’


    • That photo was from the FMDAC trip to England and members paid their own way!!

      • john taylor

        yeah i kinda figured that dick! was just havin’ a little fun with ya! love to get over there myself,and “carouse” around some! nuthin’ like “room temperature” brew to turn ya into a “sexual maniac” god love ’em! don’t know how they can “swill” that crap down at ”room temperature!”..like ta turn ya inside out it would! some sweet history in those fields! wish i could get a chance to hunt there! ohh welll!..maybe when i hit the lottery!..i’m just sayin’


      • Oh Ricardo! Do not bear false witness.
        Indeed they did pay their own way, but when taking refreshment in the Shrine of St Wadsworth, the devotees stood their ’round’ of the fruit of the grape or juice of the barley.
        One of the assembled pilgrims was heard to utter…”I seem to have left my wallet back at the hotel. Could I have a loan of $20 from the Poor Box?” And so it came to pass.

        Wouldst I utter a terminological inexactitude? May the Spirit of Generosity soon enter your wallet.

      • Spirit my ass…..to quote the late Jim Lewellen, president and CEO of Fisher Labs:

        “May ye be plagued with mineral-bearing rocks, hard packed soil, pestilence, serpents, locusts, poisonous vegetation, and great multitudes of pulltabs, bottle caps and rusty nails. May ye spend the remaining years of thy wretched life digging signals of false origins…”

  3. Ed B.

    The response from the “right Reverend Howland” had me laughing myself silly……

  4. john taylor

    the ”right reverend john howland!”…settle for that on my “own slab!”..i’m just sayin’


  5. Tony

    Dick, your researching skills even shine when tracking down scam alerts! Very cool indeed!

    “right Reverend John howland” – wow that was a good laugh!

  6. john taylor

    to the “right reverend john howland”:
    “good luck with that!”..mightswell rob a bank as
    to expect that 20 anytime soon! got ourselves a “barn raisin”
    up here in coventry,vermont! sure could use that 20 spot dick! ole’ sock, ole’ kid!


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