Former Augusta Chronicle and Augusta Herald sports editor Al Ludwick dies

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Al Ludwick, longtime sports editor of The Augusta Chronicle and The Augusta Herald, died Wednesday morning. He was 84.

Al Ludwick, the sports editor at The Augusta Chronicle and The Augusta Herald for 28 years, died Wednesday morning in Augusta. His regular column was called "The ALcove."  FILE
Al Ludwick, the sports editor at The Augusta Chronicle and The Augusta Herald for 28 years, died Wednesday morning in Augusta. His regular column was called "The ALcove."

Ludwick, who is survived by his wife, Peggy, four children and seven grandchildren, will be cremated. The date for a memorial service has not been determined, Peggy Ludwick said.

The Ludwicks were married for 56 years after they’d dated for “two years and four months,” she said.

“I just loved him so much,” she said. “I kissed him last night and told him I loved him. He said he was hurting and cold.

“I don’t know how I’m going to get along without him.”

Ludwick was born in Greensburg, Pa., in 1928. He and Peggy moved to Augusta in 1961, when he started working for The Augusta Herald as an outdoors writer.

In 1963, Ludwick was promoted to sports editor “and got a $5 raise,” Peggy Ludwick said. Her husband, whose witty column was called “The ALcove,” covered all sports, including golf. Bill Baab, former outdoors editor and current fishing editor, said Ludwick almost single-handedly put out the Masters Tournament preview section by himself in the early days.

“Al was a joy to work with,” said Baab, who added Ludwick gave him permission to go to the first of 17 Bassmaster Classics in 1975. “He was very knowledgeable of all sports, but especially golf.”

Ludwick also made the most of working at the newspaper, Baab said. After his shift at the Herald, he would wait on papers so he could start his delivery route on the way home.

“That was one way to make a little extra money,” Baab said.

Ludwick, who became the executive sports editor after the two papers merged, retired in 1991. In a 1999 Augusta Chronicle article he
said his biggest achievements were getting married, covering the 1981 Sugar Bowl game won by Georgia and covering the 1984 British Open.

“Al was a great sports writer, sports editor and friend,” said Chronicle golf writer David Westin, who was hired by Ludwick in 1978. “We played a lot of golf together at The Patch and I don’t remember ever beating him.

“He loved covering the Masters and he was highly respected by all the golfers. I remember being invited to his house when I first started working for him and seeing a framed letter on the wall that he’d received complimenting him on one of his Masters stories. It was from Ben Hogan.”

Don Rhodes, Morris Communications publications editor, worked for years in the newsroom with Ludwick. Rhodes said he was not only a great person, but he was also a great storyteller, writer and musician.

“I heard him play his trombone many times with various bands around town, including with the Augusta Symphony and the Augusta Concert Band,” Rhodes said.

“He almost always was smiling or laughing when you talked with him.”

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Riverman1 05/22/13 - 11:08 pm
He appears to meet the

He appears to meet the definition of a renaissance man. The family has my deepest sympathy.

Young Fred
Young Fred 05/22/13 - 11:21 pm
Mr. Ludick will be missed!

Mr. Ludick will be missed! He's one of the "originals", no nonsense, straight up kind of guy's.

The world is a little less brighter today.

Connor Threlkeld
Connor Threlkeld 05/23/13 - 12:06 am
I played trombone with Mr.

I played trombone with Mr. Ludwick in the Augusta Concert Band for a couple of years after I first moved to the area. When I mentioned I worked at The Chronicle, he had a lot of stories to share. A great man to talk to. In 2008, we shot video of him sharing memories of The Masters with his fellow sports writers, I'm working to get it online.

jbludwick 05/23/13 - 12:34 am
Al Ludwick, great man.

Mr. Threlkeld, I would love to see the video when you post it. I'm sure you know how to get in touch with the family. Thanks for the kind words, also , to everyone. Calling Dad "a renaissance man" made me glow a little!

soapy_725 05/23/13 - 08:48 am
I'm reminded when I see these fine gentlemen pass...

of George Jones' tune, "Whose gonna fill their shoes, whose gonna walk that tall..."

Live you life that you bring honor to your father and your mother that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God has given you.

Austin Rhodes
Austin Rhodes 05/23/13 - 08:55 am
Great asset to the community!

We were blessed to have him! Peggy...Emily...Tim...we really appreciate you sharing him with us...he was a treasure...

dashiel 05/23/13 - 11:14 am
Al Ludwick: Dedicated Journalist

Several years ago when I was Sunday Editor at the Chronicle-Herald, staffers were expected to contribute feature stories to the Sunday tabloid section. Suzanne Beaufort was a staff writer then so there was no shortage of ballet stories, but good photographs were another matter. I happened to mention this to Mr. Ludwick and to my surprise, he not only volunteered to take photos, but became a ballet enthusiast! Al's interests were many and deep. You are right to call him a Renaissance Man. He reminded me in several ways of H. L. Mencken. Such men should live a thousand years.

myparrot 05/23/13 - 11:31 am
Nice Guy

He was always considerate and listened to anyone if they came to him with a problem. I worked separating color photos in pre press work and if we came to him with issues on AP photos, a big pain back then to reproduce, he heard what we told him and worked to get the best picture in the paper. Just a real super guy. He will be greatly missed. God bless you, Al.

ABHammers 05/23/13 - 01:32 pm
Rest in peace

I knew Al for over 20 years. He taught me how to play and appreciate the game of golf and was a very patient teacher. I will always cherish my memories of our time on the course together or just watching whatever sport was in season on TV. He was a man with great insight, knowledge, many talents, and a dry sense of humor that would often catch you off guard. He also had many interesting stories. One of his favorite sayings was, if you ever get tired while you are driving, "chew a stick of chewing gum." He wasn't a man that you could hug or show a lot of emotion with, but he always had a friendly hand shake and a warm smile for you. I just hope he knows I loved him.

csrareader 05/23/13 - 04:23 pm
He was a local treasure that

He was a local treasure that will be missed by family, friends, and his many readers. Condolences to the family.

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