In Market: How we got that story

🕐 2 min read

It started as a small story on a local guy making good.

Our news editor – and eagle-eyed veteran newsman (and sports junkie) – Bill Thompson saw an item on our Associated Press news feed that a Fort Worth man was doing well on the Web.com tour.

“Might be a good little story,” he said.

He was right, except for the “little” part. As you can tell by the story in this week’s issue, the story is anything but “little.”

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We assigned the story to Samantha Calimbahin, our newest reporter and a recent Texas Christian University graduate. She also has a bit of a sports background from her days at TCU.

So Samantha reached out to Fort Worth golfer Martin Piller to do a story.

We soon found out Martin’s wife was a golfer too, on the LPGA Tour.

Even better, we thought.

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Oh, and Martin turned out to be the son of Dan Piller, the former Fort Worth Star-Telegram reporter.

Even more of a local connection.

We started getting the story ready. A nice story about a young couple balancing tour schedules, money and golf championship dreams.

Then Bill had a sleepless night. A fortuitous sleepless night.

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He turned on the television and saw a golf tournament. The Solheim Cup competition – basically the ladies’ version of the Ryder Cup.

Who was up to putt but Martin’s wife, Gerina Piller, playing for Team USA. It was a gut-wrench clutch of a putt. If she misses, Team USA’s hopes are dashed.

And who was in the crowd but Martin, who put his own tour on hold to fly to Germany to support his wife.

Gerina made the putt and the crowd erupted. And the hug between Martin and Gerina changed our story.

Suddenly, this wasn’t just a story about a golf couple. It was a love story about two people, their hopes and dreams and their intertwining professional golf fortunes.

We don’t have many of those stories in Fort Worth Business. We talk about dollars, cents, business strategies, real estate deals, new developments and what new hamburgers are coming to town.

This time we got to do a love story and it’s a good one. Rarely can golf bring a tear to your eye, but this golf story likely will.

That’s how we got that “little” story.

Robert is a Fort Worth native and longtime editor of the Fort Worth Business Press. He is a former president of the local Society of Professional Journalists and was a freelancer for a variety of newspapers, weeklies and magazines, including American Way, BrandWeek and InformatonWeek. A graduate of TCU, Robert has held a variety of writing and editing positions at publications such as the Grand Prairie Daily News and InfoWorld. He is also a musician and playwright.

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