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Remembering the singular Grateful Red

Above) Bill Walton as a Portland Trailblazer in 1976-77; the team came back from a 2-0 finals deficit to beat the favored Philadelphia 76ers.

A Bill Walton retrospective on

By Professor Parquet / Cort Reynolds

Bill Walton was the quintessential southern California baby boomer turned flower child.

No one or five articles can adequately describe the multi-layered personality of Big Bill. He was the rare great athlete who transcended his sport.

Armed with boundless energy and enthusiasm, he was a fierce Vietnam War protestor, a political champion of minorities and underdogs, even though he suffered from a severe stuttering problem. Walton was a serious bicyclist and a renowned music lover, especially of his favorite band, the Grateful Dead.

Despite suffering through dozens of surgeries, mostly on his feet and knees, he still proclaimed himself the luckiest guy on Earth, refusing to give in to pain and negativity.

After retiring as a player, Bill overcame a debilitating stutter to become an acclaimed, hyperbolic NBA and college basketball analyst. Some, including favorite Portland teammate Maurice Lucas, theorized he talked so much on TV in order to make up for all the years when he couldn’t speak well.

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