SUMMER SEASON LOOK BACK!!
It is possible that some followers will have read the articles I will post in this series. However; as most were posted when Alf Primeau and I had the Website, and as I now have 329 “friends” on Facebook which we did not have at that time, I do hope that both “new” followers and the “not so new” followers will enjoy the articles. I will avoid some of the more controversial articles. During this period, Earl Ball, Wilbur Estes, Larry Brown and Sandy Quinn were frequent writers. DO HOPE YOU ENJOY!! Stan
Stan Speaks: First I must blow my own horn >> just a bit. This terrific pic of Ninfa and Jim was taken by yours truly. The story you are about to read is by Ninfa, and it is about Jim > just a great story! I have added a paragraph about Ninfa at the end of the story.
Ninfa Speaks: Jim Bailey grew up on a small farm in upstate N.Y. Upon graduating from high school Jim Sr. sold the farm and moved into the village of Sterling. Work in 1955 was hard to come by so he signed on to a local contractor. Being seasonal work Jim was laid off. After some coercion from a couple of his cronies they all met at Mary’s Restaurant and there sat a Marine Sargent in his dress blues, medals and ribbons. We all said that’s for us. Little did we know what lay ahead for us in Paris Island boot camp? Momma come down here and take us home!!!
Jim completed 4 years and was honorably discharged. Back home work was still hard to come by so he hooked up with a company that put up farm silos; that was also seasonal. About that time he met a wonderful gal named Ninfa who after a whirl wind romance became his wife on Dec. 31, 1960; that is also Ninfa’s Birthday. It is still going strong after 49 years. Only God and Ninfa know why she put up with him that long.
Jim and Ninfa moved to Rochester where she was from, where he started working in a paint factory to help pay the bills. 18 months later Kodak called (the big yellow box) and there he stayed for 30 years. Moving up the ranks Jim was in charge of a 400 million dollar coating machine that produces movie and Kodacolor film. This machine ran 24-7.
In 1991 Kodak wanted to down size and they offered a retirement package that he could not refuse. Therein began a new chapter in their lives. In Dec. Ninfa and Jim bought a Motor Home and were on their way to Fl. settling in Palmetto where Jim’s Parents lived. Jim’s Dad was 86 and his health was starting to fail.
That first winter in Florida Jim started doing his first love and that was fishing and playing a little golf. Jim’s Dad died in June of 1992 and he cherished the time he spent with him. Time marches on and Jim & Ninfa moved into an RV park where he ran into a new friend Dan Sullivan who in 1996 talked him into playing shuffleboard. Ninfa hates Dan to this day HA HA. Jim’s first tournament was at Bradenton Tropical Palms in the Senior Games not knowing rules or any procedures of the game. Jim brought his cooler of beer and found out that was a big NO-NO. At the Senior Games Jim ran into a lady who became a lifelong friend who was cheering for him to win in the singles event “Betty Downing”. Jim played against Sam Barnett and others who were Pro‘s, not knowing what a Pro or a drift card was AND you’re not supposed to beat a pro!! He did. Jim went on to win the tournament and Betty placed the gold medal around his neck and gave him a hug. Wow this was fun!!!
Dan Sullivan talked Jim into going to Tucson, AZ where they competed in the National Senior games. Jim went on to win the gold medal in singles and Dan and Jim won the Bronze.
In the fall of 1997 Jim joined the Bradenton Shuffle Board Club. By this time Jim was feeling his oats until he ran into people at the club who knew how to play the game. He listened and practiced and took his lumps and some butt chewing by his friend Walt Wedel. Wherein he ran into a lady and declared “I love this game”, she replied “oh know we have created another monster”. That lady was Ann Hersom. God Bless her.
Jim started up the ladder of success and in the fall of 1999 he was approached by Dave Minnich and asked if he would be interested in running for the State Board as 3rd vice (Jim was already on three Boards in the district) After much soul searching he agreed. Ninfa hates Dave to this day. JUST KIDDING.
Jim owes his success to many, too many to name because he would leave someone out so to them he says God Bless he loves you all.
Stan Speaks: Ninfa is no stranger to the “cue”!! She and Jim qualified for the Senior Games in three States in 1998; Florida, Kentucky and New York. They went on to win gold at the National Senior games in Kissimmee. Ninfa has also shuffled in International Events!
As explained by Jim and Beth Allen, Jim (Bailey) made the shot that was heard around the world, the shot that won him the World Singles in 2009 in Betmar, FL. This was the shot you saw him make on the Video that Jim Allen prepared and sent to us. Jim is a Past President of the FSA, the current President of the US National and a Board Member of the ISA. Ninfa is the Secretary of the US National.
Here is a great article: HE DID IT One of the pix in this (HE DID IT) article is of Jim accepting the Golden Cue, emblematic of 1st Place in an ISA Singles Event. Here is a pic of the Competitors at this major event held in Betmar FL!! Click once to expand; click again to recognize all!!
To read other articles about Jim Bailey, enter Jim Bailey into the search rectangle and hit search. Stan McCormack. Article put together 2016 04 21.