My Back Story: What You Don’t Know That May Surprise You

Everyone has a “backstory”. I’m no different. Mine has had a few interesting “plot twists” along the way. I won’t be getting into every twist here.  (Frankly, I may write a book. Maybe a TELL ALL- lol!).  I would wager that no one knows all that you are about to read – including my closest family members. Since it’s my birthday weekend, I thought I would divulge…~Heather


I have been a teacher for about 16 years; however, teaching wasn’t my original career choice.  When I began attending Shasta College over twenty years ago, my original major was Broadcast Journalism.


Here’s what I looked like back then… (Check out my hot car and high waisted pants lol!)




I wanted to be a NEWSCASTER!  I was immersed in my major, and even wrote for Shasta’s newspaper, The Lance! Here’s a pic of a cover story I wrote for The Lance! 



Ironic pic of the cover below! The cover story the “Golden Handshake Gets Administrative ‘Thumbs Down’” was published 22 years ago on December 1, 1995 lol.




Every year Shasta College hosted a Career Day with booths representing various career fields.  On one such  Career Day, I recognized a young man sitting at the KRCR booth. He was one of the sportscasters, Rich Eisen.


That afternoon I spoke to Rich for a while about my interest in the field. He encouraged me to intern at KRCR the following semester. I was fortunate that my Journalism professor, Peter Berkow, recommended me for the internship!


I have some very fond memories from that experience! I worked with some amazing people at KRCR: Rich Eisen, Mike Mangas, Gary Gunter, Jennifer Scarborough, and Kris Kuyper–to name a  few.  I was even able to accompany reporters on the field!


One day I went up in a four- seater plane to help interview a female pilot who had been flying for over 50 years!


Once we drove into the mountains to interview a gentleman who was anti-government.  When we arrived, he pointed to an article of Newsweek proudly displayed on his wall-because it was about his mountain arsenal. I’ll never forget his reaction to a helicopter flying over his property, as we were attempting to finish the interview!


Another time, a reporter was developing a news package about household cleaning products. She needed to film in a “typical family kitchen,” so we ended up taking footage at my parents’ house when they weren’t home. They found out about that later, and had a good laugh about their kitchen’s appearance on the evening news.


I loved the excitement and camaraderie of the newsroom. I enjoyed sitting at the editing machines next to Rich Eisen and Mike Mangas, another newscaster who recently retired from KRCR, and just observing their chemistry.


(Not too long after my working along side of Rich Eisen he was recruited by ESPN, and later the Football Network. Here is a video of Rich Eisen on location at the 2000 World Series re-connecting with Mike Mangas.)



As special as my internship was, I did find it stressful at times working under a deadline. I soon realized it may not be the best match for me, so I decided to change majors. I would end up doing that a few times lol, and eventually settled on majoring in History. And, later a career in education.


I was recently asked if I regretted not becoming a newscaster, and honestly, I don’t regret that choice. If I hadn’t changed my major, who knows what twists and turns my life would have taken. I am blessed to have an amazing career as a special education teacher. It is one of the most rewarding aspects of my life. Also, I have been so blessed by the people I have encountered on my journey.


Do you ever think about how different your life could have been? I have, but not in a regretful way. More of an appreciative way.




This past year, has been a season of changes for me and my family.  Our blog documents many of them…


*We made our healthy a priority, which has led to my husband and I both losing over 25 pounds each! (Here’s links to blog posts explaining how we did it!)


*We found a church that we are blessed to call “home.”


*We now spend our evenings at the firepit conversing instead of zoning out in front of the tv.


*We have met some amazing people, and developed some great friendships!


I am so thankful for this past year. It has truly been “A YEAR OF YES!”


A year of stepping out of my comfort zone, trying new things, and meeting new people. A year to stretch myself.  I understand now more than ever the importance of being uncomfortable:  without discomfort, we can’t grow. We end up settling.




So even though I’m turning a year older, I’m excited to see what this next year holds. Another YEAR OF YES!  I know I still have lots of renovating to do.  Thank God, He’s not done with me lol. I hope you will continue the journey with me/us!


Here is a pic of me taken on Thanksgiving (photo credit Vinnie)-purple hair, don’t care.



Here is a pic of my  family-I’m so blessed!




4 thoughts on “My Back Story: What You Don’t Know That May Surprise You

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